The technical feasibility of regulating gambling on the internet

Abstract

A working definition and scoping of the concept of gambling is provided, including consideration of the ongoing 'virtualisation' of gambling. Key features of Internet technology are identified. Internet gambling is examined. Difficulties that exist in relation to the criminalisation of gambling activities are addressed, and the authors distance themselves from any assumptions about the appropriateness of particular aspects of Internet gambling regulation. A framework is suggested for the regulation of Internet gambling, and an analysis is undertaken of the technical feasibility of preventing, detecting and investigating illegal Internet gambling. CONCLUSIONS: The technilogical challenges of on-line gambling appear to be ever-increasingly non-governable, the paper recommends the best form of achievement is with global multi-lateral co-operation. A larger appreciation for the power of the internet is needed in order for its dangers to be effectively addressed. Regulatory agencies need to leverage off the education, training and research activities, in order to adapt existing control regimes to cater for within-jurisdiction, licensed gambling providers; and to conceive and articulate new strategies to address unlicensed and extrajurisdictional Internet gambling providers. Governments need to actively discourage the substitution of existing gambling by untaxable Internet gambling.A credible impression may be able to be created that law enforcement agencies will provide difficulties to unlicensed operators.

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