The Most Restrictive Countries for Online Casinos

Today the world is developing at an accelerated pace, but we still can’t cope with virtual gambling. This debatable issue is causing global upheaval, partly because it is difficult to regulate online betting effectively. Some countries have decided to fully ignore virtual gaming, others are trying to restrict it, and just a few have adopted it. Let’s see which countries have the harshest online casino regulations worldwide.

How available are online gambling sites?

Currently, practically everywhere, there are local laws for regulating the gambling business. The attitude toward regional and foreign gaming operators is fundamentally different around the world. For instance, in the EU, the international casinos’ activities are normally subject to EU legislation, which have to comply with its member states.

Nonetheless, not all people approve that foreign game providers evade paying taxes. Counter to the European Community requirements, they reassign international sites under their own regulatory rules, obliging them to get betting licenses and deduct taxes to the national budget.

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Gambling regulations statistics

  • 28 states prohibit residents from betting and block the regional gaming websites. Yet, foreign institutions are free to operate, even without a permit. Authorities of Australia, Mexico, Nigeria, and Brazil cannot prohibit gambling.
  • 32 countries allow all gaming websites to operate only under a local permit. These are Finland, Great Britain, Denmark, France, and the Netherlands.
  • 32 states ban regional game providers from operating unlicensed, but the gambling establishments operated overseas can securely offer games to citizens. We can find Greece, Canada, Seychelles, and Sweden among them.
  • 93 states do not permit or ban virtual casinos. These are Egypt, Argentina, Gibraltar, Venezuela, and the Bahamas.

Countries with strict regulations

The states that ban virtual casinos are listed below:

The United States

The USA has some limitations for online players. The detested UIGEA has brought about lots of misunderstandings about the legality issue. American people have a problem withdrawing funds or depositing them since banks refuse to process gaming transactions. Local operators avoid dealing with complex regulations, so they just restrict access to the residents. Even if eventually players find an available website to register, it is unlikely that they will cash out the winnings!


The situation of virtual casinos in Brazil is confusing. The regional laws are strict about gambling, but as they were adopted even before the Internet occurred, the government fails to manage its online counterparty. It is prohibited, but the current legislation stays flexible, leaving Brazilian gamblers free to use any ways to access online casinos.

The Netherlands

Regardless of being an EU member, where laws require the freedom to provide gaming service amid the state and its residents, the Netherlands does not want to legalize virtual casinos. Local or external game providers are not approved here. Fortunately, constructive changes are likely to take place soon.


This country has unfair rules, where only tourists can gamble, and locals can simply watch with envy how non-nationals enjoy the in-land and virtual luxury casinos. Many ignore the prohibition and can be spotted on websites, often unnoticed. The risk of detention or fines does not deter them.


Casinos are banned in Ukraine, so operators should also stay away. Yet, here gambling is not blocked by Internet service providers or by banks. The state did not specify what sanctions are provided for law violations by gamers or casinos. Residents wisely use legitimate loopholes, playing without fear of prosecution.


China approves gaming entertainment in no form. In addition to Hong Kong, which has separate bylaws, this is perceived as law-breaking in all regions. It is just as illegal to offer online games as it is to be seized betting. Several gambling clubs are catering to China’s residents.


In Russia, betting is a great no-go. Not so long ago, some operators tried to break into the industry and persisted in remaining in an aggressive environment for many years. Currently, the republic dynamically blocks betting, online operators, and even websites, somehow related to gambling. The government focuses on driving the trespassers away forever.


Virtual game suppliers, as well as online slots, have been forbidden here since 2007. Internet service providers and local agencies attempt to stop illegal websites in any way. People who can afford to pay vast amounts of cash if they are caught betting, use the rare operators’ services that accept resident gamblers.

Saudi Arabia

Residents of Saudi Arabia consider wagering a vice that cannot be borne. If found, the offenders are immediately detained and then sent to prison, and must pay high fines. The net here is severely filtered so citizens can access only the web pages approved by the government.


Though no lawful systems are barring online betting clubs, local citizens are not allowed to wager or earn from them, mainly because of their addictive nature. As the internet service provider is not extensive around the state, it will be difficult for gamers to access the websites.

Every single country has its regulations, and it is hard to say what is right or wrong. We should bear in mind that each phenomenon carries both positive and negative aspects. By banning online gambling, some authorities protect society from some negative consequences, but also, they deprive it of many privileges, including additional earnings.