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Paypal Online Casinos Guide

“Yeah, you can just PayPal it to me.” You’ve probably heard that phrase at least a couple of times, and it might not even refer to the specific topic in our headline. When a brand starts to prop up in the language as a non-specific noun like this, then you know it’s really starting to dominate the market. To Google is the most recent example, but in the past, Hoover has come to stand in for vacuum cleaner, and sellotape for adhesive tapes.

PayPal is by far the biggest online payment system in the world. You may have some pretty negative opinions about these giant tech corps and their power over our lives. We certainly do, but now isn’t the time for that, because the truth is that PayPal has become so dominant in its market that it stands in for all online payment systems in the popular imagination. And it’s done this while having quite a chequered relationship with online gambling, where its dominance in payment systems is nothing like that it has in other markets.

There are historical reasons behind that, and it’s why the search for a legit online casino PayPal site is sometimes fraught with difficulty and danger, and it’s also why the brand is so valued by online gamblers.

In this guide, we’ll have a look at PayPal Casinos, PayPal gambling online, gambling sites that accept PayPal and lots more. Let’s start by looking at the history of PayPal, and how it has interacted with the online gambling industry.

PayPal – The birth of an online giant

The double P in PayPal is now one of the world’s most well-known logos. You’ll see the sign everywhere, and for a lot of people, it’s come to stand for safety and security in online payment processing. PayPal is linked with almost every big brand there is. People use it for everything from massive business transactions, to shopping at their local shop – PayPal saturates our lives. The company has worked hard for a long time to achieve this status. But it’s a long way from the company’s original foundational urge, which was to create something outside of fiat currencies. (A lot of Silicon Valley people, and certainly some of the big names behind PayPal are libertarians. This might be a lesson on how to treat apparent “principles” from libertarians. They seem very flexible.)

Among those founders were Peter Thiel, Luke Nosek, Max Levchin, and Len Howery, who founded what would become PayPal in 1998, calling their little baby Confinity. They started out as a security company before going into online payments the following year. The year after that they joined up with a company called (sheesh!) founded by a chap by the name of Elon Musk. X was a banking company and PayPal’s expansion was well on schedule, with the company going public in 2002 as PayPal, an established online payment company.

eBay then bought the company for $1.5 billion. This gave PayPal major clout. The auction site was one of the most successful commercial marketplaces online, and linking up with eBay as an official payment partner gave PayPal major league credentials. It’s probably this deal that did the most to make PayPal the internet’s dominant payment scheme. The company saw off a load of competing services while working with eBay, most of which folded in due course, leaving the field free for the double P. They beefed up their security work and tied in with MasterCard. In 2008, PayPal bought an Israeli fraud and security company and continued to buy up companies over the next few years.

The company was now making hundreds of millions of dollars a quarter and transacting billions of dollars of business every year. The company continued to grow, with its users also hitting the hundreds of millions by 2010. One hiccup came in the shape of some hack attacks from Anonymous activists after PayPal stopped handling WikiLeaks donations. PayPal also did what a number of internet-first companies have done, and moved its business off-line back into the real world. By 2011 you could pay in real-life stores with PayPal, and by 2012 PayPal had handled $145,000,000,000. In 2014, PayPal left eBay and became independent again. It has continued to buy up other companies in the sector, generally to give it a wider international reach or to add particular technical expertise.

Why is Gambling a Special Case?

PayPal and gambling have a slightly more complex relationship than this story suggests though. And to understand it you need to understand the history of online gambling and the rather strange history of the American law on gambling. Gambling has almost always existed in a slightly strange legal world. In the modern age, it has generally been accepted – in most developed democracies – that it is possible for customers of gambling businesses to be exploited in a way that customers of other businesses cannot be. This is complex philosophical stuff, but the broad sweep of the issue is that legislators have recognised that gambling can be addicting.

You’ll notice that most products that are age-limited fall into this area: cigarettes and alcohol most notably. And you’ll note that products in this area are often bootlegged or counterfeited or otherwise illegally traded. Yes, unscrupulous people do steal and sell almost every product under the sun, and high-cost brands are often fakes, but smuggling, fakery, and unregistered sales are particularly an issue for addictive products. It’s no accident that organised crime has thrived by operating in sectors of the economy selling highly regulated and taxed – and therefore highly expensive – or illegal products. Gangsters don’t just sell drugs – in the sense of illegal narcotics – they’ve also always specialised in alcohol, tobacco, sex, and gambling.

Arguably the biggest break that the American Mafia ever got was the 1920 introduction of the Volstead Act that made the prohibition of alcohol a reality. Historians are still debating the reality of the apparent “crime waves” of this era, but by passing laws against a massively popular product that was legally available in all neighbouring countries and that could be relatively easily produced, the United States Government gave the Mafia a way out of the shadows and into more mainstream life. Gambling has also been illegal in many parts of the United States for much of the country’s history. And it’s for the same reasons that well-intentioned people banned the sale of alcohol. Both can and do cause very real harm. It’s easy to slag off prohibition on legal, philosophical, or political grounds, but it did actually cause reductions in many of the harms caused by alcohol abuse.

It seems reasonable to assume that the same might be true of laws that ban gambling. However, it is also true that gambling is legal in neighbouring territories (whole economies, like Macau, or the Native American reservation casinos, and of course Las Vegas) have been built on local differences in these laws. And where people don’t travel, they are often committed enough – or maybe out of control enough – when it comes to gambling to break the law. Thus, a staple of organised crime funding for generations have been gambling games. Not just crooked ones either: bookmaking, card games, casinos, “the numbers” (a type of lottery) and more have been run by organised crime groups in an essentially honest way.

If all this seems academic it’s not, because your PayPal casino today takes its place in this long legal and social story. Let’s take a look at online gambling payment history.

PayPal Gambling or Not?

As one of the leading online payment providers, it was only natural that PayPal should have taken a full role in the explosion in online gambling that followed the introduction of the first web gambling in the 1990s. However, payment has always been an issue for online gambling sites and the birth of online casinos that accept PayPal was always going to be a big step. Transferring money online is potentially risky. Everyone knows this, and banks and credit card companies make a very big deal about making sure that their customers know all about it.

In the early days, transfers had to be made in the same way as they were over the telephone, either by providing bank account details or with a credit or debit card. But, American companies were wary of this. The legal status of gambling in America was a confusing patchwork, and banks didn’t want to end up in legal jeopardy for funding illegal activities. It was easier for banks to simply outlaw gambling as a whole.

PayPal didn’t take this stance initially. But American legislators were fairly quick to react to the spread of internet gambling (much faster than they are to react to, say, election interference. But who knows why that might be.). The catchily named Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act came into law in 2006, forbidding payments for unlawful gambling activities. That was the spur for PayPal, on its way to becoming a worldwide brand and a bank in everything but name, to withdraw from all gambling business worldwide. This is why for a while there were no PayPal casinos, no new PayPal casinos, no PayPal gambling, and no gambling sites that accept PayPal. A PayPal logo was a pretty good way of spotting an illegitimate fraud site.

PayPal even paid $200,000 to New York State legal authorities as a sort of sorry for the gambling payments they had made. In 2010 though, PayPal gambling sites became a possibility again! PayPal re-entered the market. And the market it entered was now massive. These two facts may not be unrelated. In fact, it had always been legal for PayPal to participate in lawful PayPal gambling. There are already international money transfer sites that allow gambling payments. American companies like VISA and Mastercard allowed gambling payments. All PayPal had to do to allow online casinos that accept PayPal was to restrict the use to legal custom. Perhaps they just decided the risk wasn’t worth it. Pay-outs in American court cases can be enormous after all. It was probably just simpler to apply a blanket ban.

Why the PayPal Ban was Good News for You

Once they returned to PayPal gambling online, the company set up some pretty strict requirements on who it would work with. And that is good news for players, who can find a PayPal casino deposit and know that the site has undergone at least some due diligence from the biggest online payment company in the world. But PayPal is playing catch-up now. And its decision to have no casino sites that accept PayPal left open the door to a market in which it was becoming dominant. Into that door sprinted a load of other companies.

Alternatives to PayPal Gambling Online

With no PayPal gambling, people did need an alternative way to spend money at online gambling sites. Not everyone has a bank account, and while many e-wallets need you to use a bank account or card to fund them, some allow you to put cash in your account without using a bank in any way. Once they’re up and running, most e-wallets function like a bank account (though they won’t pay you interest). You put money in, and the account works as a way to transfer that money to make payments. Most – but not all – can accept payments from online casino sites.

Some e-wallets can even take cash. You buy cards or vouchers in off-line shops, which give you a unique code that will transfer the amount of money you’ve brought a card into an online gambling account.

Advantages of E-Wallets

Security and anonymity are popular plusses of using online wallets and payment systems. While they may be linked to your bank account, they put a buffer layer between your salary and bill paying power. If a gambling site is hacked, then they won’t have your credit card number.

E-wallets also allow you to limit your gambling. If you have a bank account full of cash, you could find yourself emptying it while you enjoy online video slots. Some e-wallets have a voucher-like quality that means you can set limits on what you’re going to spend. Again, it’s not fool-proof but it can be a way of inserting a break into a cycle of compulsive behaviour, and that can be enough to stop some people. E-wallets are also portable, quick to use, and trustworthy.

The popular online gambling e-wallets

PayPal is, still by far and away, the biggest online payment processing company in the world. And, even while it ducked out of the gambling business it was becoming that. But allowing others to dominate that market has built some mini rivals. The biggest online gambling e-wallet is probably Neteller. It’s a name that you will see at pretty much every online gambling site. It works very like PayPal gambling: you link a bank account or card to your Neteller account to allow you to send and receive money online. The company has been in business since 1999 and now offers its own branded MasterCard. Skrill is next inside and has a similar pedigree and similar operation.

PayPal Casino Gambling

There is a particular risk to gambling online, and it lies within you. We’ve covered why the gambling world has been particularly regulated. Because it is too easy to make bad, damaging decisions around gambling, a level of outside protection is introduced. PayPal casino sites are already a good sign that you are working with a legitimate site. PayPal left the industry completely at just the hint of legal problems. And it’s been slow to return to it, so if you want to play PayPal online casino games, you’re looking at a relatively small list of sites.

PayPal Online Casinos Have High Standards

That’s because PayPal has high standards and doesn’t want to do anything to risk its fine reputation. So a legitimate PayPal online casino payment logo is a real gold-seal of approval.

And, like any quality mark, it can be abused! People can gamble for bad reasons. We always remind our players not to use gambling as a way to earn money. The likelihood is that you will lose money when you gamble, so you should consider it entertainment and accept that you have to pay a fee. People who are desperate for quick money for whatever reason should not gamble. It is honestly the worst thing you can do. And it’s in this area that scammers profit. People with desperate needs are more likely to fall for fakery and scams.

Coca Cola drinkers might love their favourite drink. They might even be addicted to it in a sense – it’s full of sugar and caffeine, which are both probably addictive. But you don’t often hear news stories about Coca Cola fans getting poisoned by Coca Cola rip-offs. They’re just not that desperate. Heroin users are often hurt in this way.

Someone who is gambling and desperate to win because they need the money is in a very similar position to a heroin addict. They may also be a bona fide gambling addict. If you find yourself in this sort of mood or making these sorts of decisions then please step away from the computer and seek out some proper help for addiction or debt management. PayPal, as a recognised quality marque, is a good way for a scam site to appear legitimate. Scam sites can make the sorts of promises that legitimate PayPal casinos can’t, because they don’t have to live up to them.

PayPal Casinos Check

Always check that logos and links for online payment systems are legitimate and up to date. Always check that sites you play at have full encrypted security systems. Check that the PayPal casino sites you play at have up to date and legitimate licensing for the jurisdiction you are in. And not lastly, check that you are legally entitled to play at a PayPal online casino before you play at it. That’s the way to enjoy casino sites that accept PayPal without any worries.

When we talk about promises that do not have to be met, we might include PayPal casino no deposit offers in our list. No deposit offers are rare because they are expensive for casinos to run. If you see one you should always have your scam antennae fluttering. If it doesn’t have restrictive conditions on how you can use your bonus money it’s not legit. Use review sites, gamblers forums, industry body support, gambling awareness and gambling safety charities as your back up sources of information on online gambling sites.

Gamble online with PayPal in Complete Safety and Security

Legit online Paypal Casino sites are a great addition to the market for gamblers. If you like slots then you’re always keen to find a legitimate site to play at, and PayPal is a great tool for transferring your money. Unlike a lot of big internet businesses, PayPal has been notable for never having a big security or safety scandal. That’s not to say that it’s 100% foolproof though, and you should certainly follow the advice we give above on finding legitimate gambling sites. You should also make sure you use PayPal carefully. Use a password manager or make up a very good password of your own and never write it down on share it. Always make sure you’re at the legitimate PayPal site when you’re redirected there from an online gambling site that accepts PayPal.

There are a load of lists that layout safe and legitimate PayPal gambling sites, and it doesn’t hurt to take a look at one before you sign up to a site and start tapping in passwords. It’s never a bad idea to keep your transactions relatively small in any case. Putting a load of cash into an online gambling account might earn you a big bonus, but it’ll also commit you to spend a lot of money. PayPal gambling should be fun and rewarding. We think it’s a great measure of quality and a wonderful way to spot sites that you can work with safely.

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