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The History of Online Casino Law in South Africa


Gambling is one of the popular ways of entertainment in South Africa. Thousands of players are involved into gambling activities regularly. Slots gaming has a long history in this area, and at the same time people here play blackjack, poker, and other gambling games at traditional and online casinos, and popularity of the latest one increases dramatically. Although number of online casino gamblers also rises, not all of them know rules and regulation that determine status of gambling games and casinos at the territory of South African Countries.

Online Gambling in the late 90s

When the first online casinos appeared, no one took them seriously and they could operate without any legal regulations. With the run of time, the necessity to control process of gambling at online casinos has appeared, and governments of all countries started to introduce new laws that regulated online casino activity at the territory of the country.

In the late 90s of XX century, all casinos in South Africa had a legal status and any gambler could enjoy online games. However, this absence of certain regulations of online gambling caused multiple violations, and players frequently encountered casinos that provided services of low quality and cheated with players’ money.

2004: National Gambling Act

In 2004, the situation with online gambling services has changed completely. New laws concerning status of online casino gambling were introduced, and they defined it as illegal activity. Only sports betting, horse races and bookmaking receive a legal status according to the new laws.

None of the online casinos could continue to provide their services legally, and they started to receive licenses of other countries which had laws that regulated online gambling. In this way, any gamer could enjoy games with online casino although it was not legal at the territory of SA.

Changes in Law

The first attempt to make South African online casino gambling activity legal was made in 2008. With The National Gambling Amendment Act it became possible to make online gambling partly legalized at the territory of SA. However, the governments of SA countries did not enact this amendment.

Regulation of online gambling is one of the hottest issues that need to be solved as soon as possible. Today, new laws concerning online casino games are ready to be examined by the authorities, and there is a hope, that in the soonest time possible online gambling becomes legal.