Technical issues are continuing to plague newly legalised online casinos in New Jersey.
Gambling in NJ has been legal since late November 2013 as the state joins Delaware and Nevada in making it possible for residents in the state. But the geo-location technology which helps prove to authorities that gamblers are who they say they are and, more to the point, are where they say they are, i.e. within the state’s boundaries, is continuing to erroneously block legitimate gamblers.
The boss of one of the legalised online casinos, the Tropicana Atlantic City, estimates that somewhere in the region of three-quarters of all its gamblers were being wrongly blocked in the first couple of weeks since legalisation. This is because the system couldn’t accurately verify whether or not they were in the state’s boundaries.
On the flipside, the system is “working” in the sense that it is most assuredly blocking people from outside New Jersey who may be trying to gamble illegitimately. But so far, it has been far too rigorous.
Regulators from New Jersey’s Division of Gaming Enforcement said that all the legalised casinos receiving a state licence have to make sure that all players are physically located within the Garden State – and that they must be able to do so by the use of multiple location techniques. So, for example, any computer’s IP address must tally with a gambler’s cell phone location.
This has worked in effectively blocking people from around 25 different US states so far trying to play. But it’s frustrating for those people meeting all the criteria within the state of New Jersey who are still being blocked from gambling.
The technology is gradually improving, however, and some teething problems are inevitable. But casino executives report that slowly but surely, more legitimate users are now being allowed to access the sites and play. This is down partly to changes in technology changes, but mainly due to the fact that the state’s players are having success working with the various operations’ customer service representatives.
The fact that so many people are trying to get on whether from within or without the Garden State is testimony to the latent demand for online gambling in the US. If New Jersey’s experiment proves to be successful in not creating too many gambling addicts, whilst simultaneously raising tax dollars, it seems likely that other states will follow suit. This hasn’t been lost on affiliate sites like the New Jersey Blue Book which has produced a comprehensive free guide to all aspects of gambling in NJ, including great lessons in blackjack, site reviews and guides on the free offers available.
New Jersey is the 11th most populated state and is far higher up the list than Delaware and Nevada – which makes this a very significant move.
The anti-gambling lobby is particularly strong in the south eastern states, but if any of California, New York, Florida, Texas or Illinois were to follow New Jersey’s example, you can bet we’d see a veritable explosion in online gambling across the country. And this really would be a multi-billion dollar business created almost overnight. This is why there’s such interest in Jersey’s move and why the big gambling companies from around the world are getting their ducks in a row ready to compete for a slice of the cake.