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Where can I play online poker against real people for real money?
Is it legal?
How are it is safe?

Jan 24th, 2008 22:41
Dare Rudd, http://www.onlinebingoreviewdirectory.com/ http://www.skillgamesportal.com/ http://www.skillgamesdirectory.com/


There are about a dozen well-established online poker rooms that offer
live games against real people for real money. Thanks to TV shows such
as the World Poker Tour, online poker is no longer just for brave
pioneers and has gone mainstream. It has become the main topic of
conversation on rec.gambling.poker. Over a hundred thousand people from
around the world play online every week!
As of this writing, the issue is ambiguous in most U.S. states and at
the U.S. federal level. Most of the cardroom sites are operated from the
Caribbean, Central America or the Mohawk Territory of Kahnawake in
Canada. Existing laws tend to target illegal gambling operators rather
than the players, but since the online operators are out of reach there
is political pressure to modify this approach. In the U.S., several
federal bills have been proposed that regulate or forbid online wagers.
The latest tactic is an attempt to outlaw financial transactions that
are related to online gambling. On the other hand, in the U.K. the
government has been moving in the direction of legalization and
regulation. You're on your own until legal systems catch up with this
new technology.
The jury is also still out on this one. There are a number of risks:
   1. The ease of collusion among players. The magnitude of this risk is
a matter of ongoing debate, but it is possible for your opponents to
communicate secretly or even be the same person.
   2. The possibility that the cardroom will not honor a redemption
request, that is, will stiff you when you ask for your money. (A few of
the early sites folded holding player deposits.)
   3. The chance that your personal financial details, such as credit
card number or NETeller ID, are stored insecurely, allowing either a
dishonest cardroom insider or external hacker to obtain them.
   4. The possibility that the game technology is not secure, allowing
others to compromise the game's or site's integrity. This could take any
number of forms, from others knowing your cards, knowing what cards will
be dealt next, changing what cards will be dealt next, or even
impersonating you and withdrawing your money. (In the early days of
online poker, a security consultant cracked the poor shuffling algorithm
of one of the poker dealing software packages.)
   5. The possibility that the underlying game technology is programmed
to deal an unfair game, for example, by failing to shuffle randomly.
This is a popular topic among losing players; see the discussion on the
cash-out curse.
   6. The possibility that an insider at the cardroom will take
advantage of existing security flaws or secretly create new ones to
favor their accomplices during play.
   7. The chance that a cardroom insider will compile records of your
play and reveal them to your opponents for strategic or tactical analysis.
   8. The chance that you will be found guilty of a crime in some
jurisdiction, perhaps not even your own, simply for playing. For
example, if your internet traffic is routed through Virginia, as much of
it is, are your internet activities subject to Virginia law?
   9. The chance that authorities -- somewhere -- seize your money,
either while deposited or in transit, and then place the burden on you
of demonstrating why they should return your funds.
  10. The chance that opening an offshore account will bring other
aspects of your life under the scrutiny of authorities, for example, by
increasing the chances of an IRS tax audit.
You might notice that many of these risks exist in real cardrooms. It is
likely that some risks will be greater in the online world and that some
will be lesser. For example, several of the online cardrooms claim to
apply collusion detection algorithms to the database of hand histories.
And a popular form of online poker is the heads-up game, where collusion
is impossible. It may turn out that the cost of collusion is lower in
the online world. In the area of game software integrity, most of the
top online cardrooms have engaged auditing firms to provide independent
validation of the fairness of their dealing algorithms. That's
reassuring. But still, the legal questions are fuzzy and you have to
judge for yourself whether you can accept the risks.
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Sources : conjelco.com