Online gambling, or e-gambling, is a form of betting that is done over the internet. It includes sports betting and lotteries. There are many different forms of e-gambling including casino games, virtual poker, bingo, and more.
Illegal online gambling implicates several federal criminal statutes. These include the Wire Act, the Illegal Gambling Business Act, the UIGEA, and the Travel Act. In addition, there are state laws that may also be violated.
Online gambling has become increasingly popular in recent years. For example, a Liechtenstein International Lottery was the first to offer an Internet-based service for the general public. But is e-gambling legal in the United States?
Currently, only four states and the District of Columbia allow legal online gambling. However, there is some talk of additional legalized online gambling in the future.
For instance, Ohio will allow sports betting in early 2019. Massachusetts is planning to legalize sports betting in early 2023. Indiana is reportedly considering legalizing online casinos in the next couple of years. The state of Illinois could also decide to legalize online casinos.
While some argue that the First Amendment protects the right to play online, it doesn’t offer protection against the threat of e-gambling. Some state lawmakers are concerned that the internet will be used to bring illegal gambling into their jurisdictions.
Other concerns have centered on the commerce clause. Although the Commerce Clause has been challenged, it is unlikely that such an attack will gain much traction.