The risks associated to gambling are well known to all casino players in Canada. Whether you play pokies, online casino games or bet on sports, the main risk you are exposing yourself to is the gambling addiction.

While that in itself is indeed scary enough, there are actually a lot of other risks involved with playing casino games, whether you do it online or offline. And even though Canada is recognized as a relatively safe place to live, work and play in, it can’t hurt to take a closer look at the dangers associated with online gambling.

What are the risks of gambling online?

Let’s check out the most noteworthy dangers you should keep your eyes open for when you get involved in online gambling.

1.   Addiction

Even though it’s clearly the one risk you are most aware of, we cannot stress this enough: pay attention to the first signs of addiction in order to take measures before it’s too late. There are many things you can do before gambling becomes a problem, but you need to be self-aware and decisive in regards to the limits you should set.

2.   Security and privacy threats

Everything you do online can have serious consequences if you don’t pay close attention to the websites you visit and the information you share with various online entities. When it comes to joining an online casino, you need to know right off the bat that you will need to share a lot of personal data in order to be able to deposit and withdraw funds.

On top of your name, email address, physical address and phone number, all online casinos require you to go through a KYC verification in order to ensure that you are who you claim you are and you live where you claim you live and so on. On top of this, you will share card information, bank details and other things in order to be able to transfer funds to and from the casino.

This is necessary because of serious money laundering and terrorism financing issues that occured in the past in the online gambling world. Money and anonymity usually don’t go that well together and when you throw gambling in the mix as well, things can go south really fast.

That is why you should always play in licensed online casinos, make sure the security certificate that guarantees the encryption of your connection to the server is valid and always try to manually write the URL manually instead of googling the casino name and clicking on the top result.

3.   Losing more than you can afford

While it may seem that this point is somehow related to gambling addiction, it actually isn’t. One of the problems we have when gambling online is that the games are oftentimes much too accessible and within reach.

Going to a land based casino involves leaving your house, driving there and so on. GAmbling at home is a different story. Your phone is always in your pocket, your laptop on the table. The effort you need to put in is always minimal, and on top of this, losing track of time at home is a lot easier than in a land based casino.

Time spent playing and money lost are usually in very close connection. The equation is simple: the longer you play, the more you will lose. And since losing track of time is quite easy when you gamble from home, so is losing track of the funds you spent. That is a dangerous game.

Is online gambling dangerous in Canada?

Well, there’s good news and bad news and you have no power to choose which one I should start with.

So, here’s the bad news: gambling in Canada does come with a lot of associated risks. You can become addicted, you can make a mistake and share more personal information than you should, you can be less attentive one day and not notice that the security certificate of the casino you visit online is expired, exposing yourself to cyber attacks and putting your privacy at risk. There’s a lot that can go wrong.

The good news is that online gambling in Canada is not any more dangerous than it is in other places. Moreover, from many points of view, playing online casino games in Canada is actually a lot safer than in other countries. The online casinos are not banned, but they are required by law to hold a license, and you don’t risk having to pay any fines.

Conclusion

Just like any other vice worth having, online gambling does come with a couple of risks involved. By paying close attention to the websites you visit, by placing a couple of limitations on the time and money you spend every day playing casino games and by having a correct mindset, you can actually avoid many of the risks and simply enjoy gambling for what it really is – an amazing form of entertainment.