Gambling websites are booming in New Jersey, and more people than ever are trying their luck with NJ online casinos. And while the logistics of online gaming are no different than any digital financial transactions, people are understandably worried about the safety of their online gambling accounts.
Is your money really safe in these casino accounts? How can you be sure?
In New Jersey, legitimate gambling sites (those licensed by the NJ Division of Gaming Enforcement) will be perfectly safe. However, there are still threats out there that may jeopardize your account unless you take the right steps to prevent them.
Is it safe to keep money in a NJ online gambling account?
While reputable gaming sites have built-in security and a strong desire to protect their loyal players, there is a serious threat facing all online gamblers.
No, it’s not hackers, malware, or shady websites that steal your data. The biggest threat to your online security is YOU.
Yes, you. Individual users can be their own worst enemy when it comes to online account safety. Most cases of identity theft and data loss come as a direct result of users failing to protect themselves or by engaging in risky online behaviors that put their information in jeopardy.
With that in mind, we’ve collected a few of the most important ways to protect yourself when diving in to the online gambling waters.
Choose only legal, regulated online gambling sites in New Jersey
Online gambling in New Jersey is perfectly safe as long as you choose a legitimate website. Since online gambling became legal in New Jersey in November 2013, there is no reason to play at an unlicensed, offshore site.
There are numerous legal online gaming sites in NJ to choose from. These sites are overseen by the state’s Division of Gaming Enforcement to ensure game fairness, site security, and recourse for players if they have complaints.
Still, do your research before depositing money into a gaming website. Check NJ online casino reviews, look up sites’ social media pages, and read NJ online gambling forums. Stick with sites that have positive reviews and offer a competitive online casino new player bonus.
Use strong passwords
While it might seem obvious, strong passwords are a must. Most people put effort into their online bank account passwords, but then link those accounts to other platforms, such as Amazon or PayPal, without treating those accounts with the same caution.
If your passwords on these third-party platforms aren’t as secure as your internet banking credentials, you’re exposing yourself to risk.
We all know how to build strong passwords: Use special characters. Include numbers. Avoid using common words or phrases. And for an extra layer of security, avoid storing your account passwords on your computer.
If a hacker gains access to your system, he/she will quickly locate your password log and record your information. To avoid this, you can use a password service such as LastPass to securely store your online gambling – and other – passwords.
Access sites only via secure connections
Unlike regular casinos, online gambling websites let you gamble from anywhere with an internet connection so long as you are within New Jersey borders. This is great in theory, but be careful about where you exercise this privilege.
It might be tempting to break out your phone and load up Golden Nugget while you’re in line at the store or waiting for a doctor’s appointment. But public wi-fi networks don’t offer secure connections. According to the folks at data security research firm Kaspersky Lab, public wi-fi networks are a hot zone where users may be exposed to malware, identity theft, and data loss.
Treat online gambling just as you would online banking, and only log in when you have access to a secure and private connection.
Be careful about your login devices
And while we’re on the subject, make sure you never log in to your gambling site or NJ mobile casino app from a public or borrowed device. As described above, public devices are inherently insecure.
And while it might seem safe to log in from a trusted friend’s laptop, don’t be fooled. Your friend’s computer may be just as dangerous as an unsecured public device. There’s no telling what type of malware or spyware your friend may have on his/her device without knowing it, so it’s safest to just avoid the risk altogether.
You wouldn’t walk down the street boasting about how much money you have in your bank account. And you shouldn’t brag to others online about how much you’ve been winning in your NJ online casino games.
It’s common sense, but as soon as players starting winning big and filling their accounts, common sense often goes out the window. It might be tempting to crow about your success to other players online, but all this does is put a target on your back for anybody who may be listening.
Hackers will be more willing to risk stealing from you if they know they have a lot to gain. Even if you’re successful in your online gaming pursuits, keep your victories to yourself.
Think of it like online banking
At its core, depositing money into online gaming accounts is just another type of financial transaction. The same rules apply to your gambling account as any other website that holds your personal financial data. Be sure to choose a reputable site. Never deposit funds unless the casino is licensed to offer games in New Jersey.
And once you’ve committed to a site, keep the above tips in mind to keep your personal information, bank accounts, and identity as secure as possible.