While there are reports that Thailand may legalize casino gambling, lawmakers need to dig deeper into the gambling behavior and preferences of Thai gamblers. The intensified crackdowns on illegal gambling dens seem to have little effect, as a greater portion of the country’s avid punters prefer to engage in online gambling. Especially now that local punters have realized that many illicit operators of underground casinos and sportsbooks take advantage of the fact that there are no laws protecting gamblers from unfair gambling practices.
Thailand;s Civil and Commercial Code, specifies under section 853 and 855 that any form of gambling debt is not enforceable. This is regardless of whether the debt is a result of a gambling activity involving friends, associates or people who present themselves as casino operators or bookmakers. Yet this is also why many local punters now prefer to gamble at a carefully selected สมัคร คาสิโนออนไลน์ (online cassino) or virtual sports book run by a licensed remote gaming operator.
At the very least, these online gambling operators comply with regulations governing the offering of fair, equitable and responsible gaming products and services. Licensing approval requires payment of hefty fees and passing of testing and audits to attest to the fairness of their games and betting platforms. Failing to meet standards or being found in violation of money laundering and anti-terrorist laws will result to possible license revocation.
The point is, of the 57% found by Thailand’s Center for Gambling Studies, as the portion of Thai population engaged in gambling, local punters rarely gamble illegally in some of the country’s land-based casinos. Nowadays, only a few venture into back alley casino dens for fear of getting caught up in intensified police raids that give illicit operators, more reason not to pay whatever winnings gained by gamblers from the gambling joint.
Why Thai Punters Continue to Gamble Online Despite Government Orders to Block Gambling Websites
The country’s Ministry of Information and Communication Technology gave orders for local Internet Service providers (ISPs) to monitor and block internet traffic accessing remotely operated online gambling websites. Yet current advancements in technology have made detecting and analyzing any gambling activities linked to Thailand IP addresses, difficult to accomplish.
The advent of smartphones and mobile applications along with the development of Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) have affected the ability of governments to monitor and control gambling transactions transpiring across the web; especially when data communicated are encrypted from end to end.
That is why offshore-based legal online casinos and sportsbooks accept gamblers from Thailand, as their operations are supported by VPN servers and messaging applications that work beyond the reach of Thailand’s Communication Ministry.
Advancements in digital technology have also made it possible for local Thai gamblers to place deposits and withdraw winnings in Thai baht. Several domestic financial institutions including local Thai banks are into facilitating such transfers, for as long as the amounts requested are within the bounds allowed by anti-money laundering and anti-terrorim laws
Lastly, the confidence to play at online casinos and to place bets in virtual sports books is boosted by the fact that web content, as well as customer services, are now accessible in Thai language. This particular feature has made local Thai punters who are not so well-versed in the English language, feel more at home and at ease playing within the privacy and comfort of their home or anywhere they deem it safe
While it seems that we are suggesting for Thai lawmakers to consider the adage, “if you can’t beat them, join them” as the best way to have control and oversight over the system, the suggestion is not far fetched at all. Other neighboring Southeast Asian countries like Cambodia, the Philippines and Vietnam have already taken such steps and have so far achieved better results.