Guest Post

Cryptocurrency Regulations Around The Globe

Author: Sohrab Khawas

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    As the use of cryptocurrency is increasing, not all industries are reacting positively. The regulations continue to be strict when it comes to crypto gambling and gambling in general despite the early efforts by the online casino operators to implement cryptocurrency as a payment option. Japan is one of the markets that have taken actions related to the use of cryptocurrency.

    World and Cryptocurrency

    In 2018, Japan passed its first law allowing land casinos to operate, with online venues expected to soon follow suit. The Payment Services Act along with the Financial Instruments and Exchange Act passed by the Japanese House of Representatives regulates the use of cryptocurrency in financial exchanges in the country. Nevertheless, this does not also mean that the crypto gambling industry in Japan is now more relaxed. 

    At the beginning of 2019, Blockchain network Tron decided to block gambling apps on its decentralized app store in the country because of the severe limitations imposed by domestic regulators.

    Japan is not the only country subject to strict regulations when it comes to cryptocurrency gambling. Only very few nations officially regulate this form of gambling, including the UK, Greece, Italy or Poland, to name some of them. As for the rest of the world, Bitcoin continues to be outlawed when it comes to making legal casino payments. We expect to see notable changes coming up soon, especially given the large size of the gambling industry in these countries that have not yet embraced cryptocurrency for gambling purposes. Japan alone has a gambling industry close to $16 billion.

    Let’s take a look at a few interesting details on how cryptocurrencies work in the fascinating world of gambling.

    On-Chain And Off-Chain Gambling

    Gambling that is related to the blockchain technology occurs both on and off-chain:

    On-chain gambling is done using a blockchain with the help of smart contracts made of decentralized apps. The code runs on a blockchain network and not a classical instead centralized server. These venues, however, are also subject to strict domestic regulations. Just take the previously mentioned example of Tron’s refusal to display decentralized apps to players in Japan. As a side note, passionate Japanese gamblers can use a VPN to get access to these apps as well as other blocked apps from other countries.            

    Off-chain gambling refers to land and virtual gambling venues that accept Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies for making deposits. They rely on third-party services for converting BTC to domestic fiat currencies such as US or Australian Dollars. You can also find web casinos that exclusively use cryptocurrency, not only Bitcoin, for deposits and withdrawals. Casinos that use BTC will normally ban IP addresses so players from restricted countries are not allowed to register and gamble there. American gamblers, for example, will usually be blocked when attempting to join an online casino that accepts Bitcoin.          

    The Global Situation

    Gamblers and punters in the United Kingdom can consider themselves lucky since the providers here are more than happy to accept BTC and other cryptocurrencies as payment methods. However, they are required to embrace the current gambling regulations, including sports betting laws.

    The English are big fans of sports betting and they wager more than 700 million GBP each year. You can find plenty of BTC-accepting sports betting venues on the web. Players are recommended to be extra cautious when using BTC to gamble, because of the “associated risks.”

    Given the numerous advantages of using cryptocurrency when gambling, lots of players are willing to take these chances. While BTC transactions do provide enhanced privacy and confidentiality, players are asked to provide their personal information when trying to switch from BTC to fiat currencies in their country.

    So-called privacy coins like Monero are known to provide users with even more protection and they are more difficult to investigate. Governments all across the world should throw the focus on tightening cryptocurrency-related regulations in order to aid people who decide to use digital currencies legally for gambling or other purposes. Decentralized apps are part of the future in many parts of the world and numerous domains, gambling included, and it is the responsibility of world governments to regulate them as best as possible.

    Final Thoughts

    More and more web casinos are gladly embracing crypto-gambling as a direct response to the public’s requests and there are even a few popular land casinos in Sin City that have started using cryptocurrency for payments. If you haven’t tried a cryptocurrency or Bitcoin casino so far, has an impressive selection of the most trustworthy venues to join.

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