Online gambling is any type of gambling conducted via the internet. This includes casinos, online poker and virtual poker. The first online gambling site opened for the public, was online ticketing for the first Liechtenstein International Poker Tournament in October 1994. Online gambling is becoming increasingly popular as a means of entertainment as well as increasing income opportunities.
As an increasing number of jurisdictions attempt to legalise online gambling there is a push by governments to make these gambling sites regulated and offer regulation and licensing for online gambling operators. Some jurisdictions such as the US, New Zealand and Malta have already introduced legislation making online gambling sites regulated and licensed. These jurisdictions have seen a boom in online gambling revenue as regulated and licensed online gambling sites offer a more reliable environment and also lower prices for users.
Most countries, the US included, ban gambling through the use of computers or the Internet; however, there are some US states that have legalized online gambling and some states allow for non-regulated gambling. Although the legal framework within the US for online gambling varies greatly, many aspects of it are consistent with practices found elsewhere in the world. In the US there are no governmental restrictions on online gambling and state-regulated online casinos can operate at any time. States that have legalized online gambling face similar problems that non-regulated gambling face such as lack of consumer protection and issues of security. For example, in Nevada state law states are allowed to regulate or tax gaming in the same way as they would tax other sales and for people to buy or sell tangible goods.