Many countries have banned or restricted the operation of online gambling sites. However, the United States, most of the European Union and several nations in the Caribbean have legalized online gambling. To operate legally in these markets, online gambling service providers must obtain licenses from the relevant regulatory bodies. For example, the United Kingdom Gambling Commission has regulations for betting exchanges, while the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has a regulation for online casinos. But what are the options available to people with a gambling problem?
The US state has made the most favorable decision to allow online gambling. However, there are many states that have yet to regulate this activity. Several states, such as Alaska, Delaware, Oregon, Washington, and West Virginia, have not allowed online gambling at all. Some states are considering legislation to allow online sports betting and poker, and this will probably continue to evolve. In the meantime, the states of Nevada, New Jersey and Delaware are beginning the process of legalizing and regulating online gambling sites.
In 2005, sports book betting accounted for one-third of Internet gambling, totaling $4 billion. By comparison, online gambling revenues from casino games accounted for a quarter of the overall industry. Poker is another popular type of online gambling. It has increased in popularity faster than other types of online gambling. In 2000, the poker website PartyPoker reported $82 million in revenue. But the numbers are still small compared to other forms of online gambling.