Israel is one of those countries that has decided to take a middle-ground approach to gambling, meaning some gambling is illegal and some isn’t. In short, two types of gambling are allowed in Israel: Sports betting and lottery. The gambling options are restricted to what is offered by two separate government entities.All other forms of gambling are illegal. There are also no online or land-based casinos in the country. Although online casinos are illegal in Israel, foreign online casinos that are not aimed specifically at Israeli players are not targeted by Israeli law.
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When you’re looking at online casinos, you’ll notice that there are lots of them out there. Some are aimed at slot players while others are aimed at sports or live casino players. You’ll also find some casinos aimed at big spenders and others that cater to casual gamblers. Knowing what type of games you’re interested in playing is important, and it’s an excellent way to narrow the search.
There are a few things that you’ll want to look out for when checking out an online casino. The answers to the questions listed below will determine if the casino you’re considering is a great, good, or not-so-good casino. Of course, deciding to play at one, despite the current gambling regulations, is entirely up to you.
Finding the answers to all of these questions is time consuming, especially if you’re just randomly checking casinos online. That’s why we here at GoodLuckMate have done it for you. We’ve collected the casinos that accept Israeli players, and we’ve reviewed them. Check out our list of selected casinos.
As mentioned earlier, the only legal types of gambling in Israel are sports betting and lottery. These two types are offered by the Israel Sports Betting Board (ISBB) and Mifal Hapayis. The only type of online gambling available in the country is the betting offered by the ISBB.
Online gambling and online casinos are subject to harsh punishments if prosecuted because the government states that online gambling is more harmful to the population than other forms of gambling. The government works hard at blocking ISPs to make foreign casino websites less accessible to local players.
Participating in gambling outside of the above-mentioned governmental services is deemed illegal. There’s no clear legislation stating that gambling at foreign online casinos is a criminal offense, but, since neither the ISBB nor Mifal Hapayis offer it, it’s still considered illegal. That said, Israeli online casino players do exist; it’s just a matter of whether individual players want to take the risk or not.
Some of the online casinos available to players in Israel today are localized for Israelis. A localized casino will allow you to hold your account balance in shekels and choose Hebrew as a language option on the site. Note that not all games will have an in-game language option for Hebrew, so you’ll come across games that are played in English even though the website is in Hebrew.
You’ll also be able to use several different payment methods such as e-wallets, various bank transfer solutions, and sometimes even cryptocurrency.
If you want to be sure you’re gambling legally in Israel, you’ll have to rely on the games offered by the ISBB and the national lottery. Unfortunately, there are no casino games such as roulette, blackjack, poker, baccarat, or slot machines in the country.
In addition, as you might have guessed, there are no land-based casinos in Israel. The only way that you can gamble anywhere near Israel is by taking a cruise. Since cruise ships operate mainly in international waters, they aren’t subject to Israeli law.
To summarize, online casinos are illegal in Israel, and foreign casinos online that are aimed towards the country’s residents are as well. International online casinos that aren’t targeted at Israeli players aren't subject to penalties under Israeli law, but players gambling on these sites can be.
Participating in gambling activities in any other form than those offered by the ISBB or the Mifal Hapayis may be considered illegal. Choosing whether or not to gamble online is, therefore, something that each player has to decide for themselves.
A gambling license is intended to protect players, and one of its main functions is to provide a mechanism for resolving disputes when they come up. If you have a dispute with a casino, and the casino is being unreasonable, the gambling authority will help you. For many licenses, this means you can contact the gambling authority to get help processing your withdrawals, claiming money the casino has debited from your account, or resolving other disputes that might arise. The likelihood that the gambling authority will help you in ways that are effective, however, depends on the procedures they have in place for this. This is yet another reason why choosing to play at a casino that has a safe license is important.
Getting help directly from the gambling authority is not always necessary, or even an option. A lot of regulators have now enforced third-party dispute resolution. This means casinos must have an agreement with an arbitrator who will look into disputes on the behalf of players from a particular casino. This ensures your dispute will be reviewed by an objective third party. All trusted online casinos have information about arbitration on their websites if they use this option, or they’ll have the contact information for the gambling authority you should consult. However, you should always try to resolve your issues with the casino first, and a lot of casinos have separate email addresses specifically for handling complaints.
If you’re worried about the security of the transactions you’re making at a casino, you should look for a logo with the acronym PCI DSS. This stands for Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard, and this is something the payment industry has created. If you see this logo, it means the casino can be trusted for safe money transactions since they follow all of the rules set by the payment industry. Information about this can also be found in an FAQ section on the casino’s website.Another thing to look out for in terms of payments is where your money is kept while you play. Some gambling authorities, all of the best ones actually, regulate what the casino can do with your money while they are holding it. Your money shouldn’t go into a general bank account held by the casino; it should go into an account that is strictly for holding player funds. This means that as long as you have the money in your player account, it can’t be spent by the casino. Your deposit will be kept separate from the operating funds of the casino until your player account is empty, which will happen if you make a funds withdrawal or if you lose the money while playing.
The best known system tool for ensuring that a casino offers fair games is eCogra; however, there are other providers that also offer these kinds of systems. You want to make sure that the casino is using a certified third-party control system to ensure that the games of chance you’re playing are actually based on chance and not on other types of metrics. Rigged games are ones that have been set up to pay out less than they claim to or ones that give some players a greater chance of winning than others.
The eCogra logo can often be found in the footer of the casino’s website, but not all casinos choose to display it. If you can’t see this logo, go to the FAQs and see if you can find information about random number generators. If there are no FAQs on the site, check out their terms and conditions or contact the casino’s support and ask how they ensure their games are safe.
Most trustworthy casinos have information about site security in the website footer, so simply scroll down and look for the logo of a well-known security system.
The gambling license a casino operates under will have a big impact on your security. Not all licenses are equally safe for players for the simple reason that they are issued by different gambling authorities that work in different ways and have different rules. The rules and regulations may be quite similar, but the way they are enforced is a different story entirely. For example, if a casino doesn’t comply with the regulations, some gambling authorities may just issue a fine while others may revoke the casino’s license outright. How often gambling authorities show up for an unscheduled inspection or control will also vary.
The biggest differences between a safe, high quality gambling license and one that isn’t as good will usually show up in the areas of fair gaming, dispute resolution and the rules and systems for identifying and handling problem gamblers (responsible gambling). If your country of residence has its own gambling authority, playing at casinos that are licensed by them will be the safest option for you. Other international licenses that can be trusted are issued by the Malta Gambling Authority and the Gibraltar Regulatory Authority. Curacao eGaming is getting better at protecting players whereas licenses from Panama and Costa Rica, for instance, are considered less safe. The worst option is obviously a casino with no license whatsoever.