Turkey to Launch a Campaign against Illegal Bitcoin Casinos

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While in certain parts of the world regulatory authorities are legalising online casino gaming with Bitcoins, governments of other countries are taking actions that will restrict their citizen’s access to the Bitcoin gaming market, and the Bitcoin market in general.
Last year, the authorities of Malta legalised online Bitcoin casinos, the UK Gambling Commission also decided to pay more attention to Bitcoin casino gaming and start issuing licences to online casinos that allow their customers to use Bitcoin as a payment method. Russia also considers introducing Bitcoin gaming legislation.
Turkey, on the other hand, is starting a massive anti-gambling campaign, which might last up to two years and it has been reported that owners of Bitcoins and other crypto-currencies will be monitored closely, as Bitcoin owners have easier access to online casino gaming compared to those who intend to play with traditional currency.

Bitcoin Owners Will Be Targeted

According to the Daily Sabah, which is a medium that is close to the Turkey’s ruling party and President Erdogan, the authorities are planning to start a fierce campaign against all types of illegal gambling and both land-based and online casinos will be targeted. The police, together with the ministries of Justice and Interior, as well as the Tax and Revenue departments, will be carrying out the campaign, but cooperation is expected from other state organisations, as well as private companies and individuals.
The date of the start of the campaign is yet to be announced, but it is clear that it will begin very soon. Turkey’s banks and other financial institutions will be required to prevent local players from depositing money to and from online casino sites that are prohibited. The authorities will also target individuals who intend on funding their online casino activities through alternative methods, and that includes crypto-currencies such as Bitcoin.
It is yet to be seen how the authorities will tackle Bitcoin casino gaming, as it is completely anonymous. Turkey censors and regulates the internet in more than few ways, therefore it is to be expected that the authorities will develop techniques that will restrict players’ access to Bitcoin online casinos.

Heavy Fines for Everyone Who Will Caught

The body that regulates communications technologies will be monitoring the internet to see if anyone is promoting online casino gaming, including advertising of illegal land-based gaming venues. Turkey has already blocked all pornographic sites, so it has been suggested that a similar scheme might be employed in this case as well.
If someone is trying to access an online casino website, they might even receive a text message from the countries authorities, warning them that what they’re trying to do is illegal. Internet cafes will also be forced to control their customers, since if someone is caught accessing an illegal website from an internet café, the owners of the café will be heavily fined.
The fines are pretty heavy for land-based operators as well, as anyone who is caught organising or participating in land-based gaming will be arrested. It seems that the state lottery and the state sports betting service will remain the only possible options for Turkish punters. Recently, the President of Turkey even demanded from neighbouring Georgia to close its casinos in the area near the Turkish border.

July 5, 2017: • No Comments

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