Online Gamling involves wagering something of value (cash or goods) on an online game of chance in the hope of winning a prize. It is legal in Washington only if it meets the following requirements: 1) a player must be 18 years of age or older, 2) they must have a registered bank account to deposit money and 3) they must agree that a certain outcome will occur if their wager is successful.
While the vast majority of online gamblers do not develop gambling problems, some individuals do. Early identification and intervention is crucial to reduce the financial detriment of online gambling. A number of risk indicators are associated with online gaming, including in-game and in-app purchases which can lead to excessive spending and a false sense of value or reward. These purchases can quickly add up and cause significant financial harm, particularly if players are prone to chasing losses.
Gambling online also poses a number of other risks, such as neglecting personal and family responsibilities and lying to family members about the extent of their gambling. In addition, online gambling can contribute to symptoms of depression and anxiety. Excessive online gambling also has the potential to lead to addiction if not addressed.
There are a variety of strategies to help people overcome their online gambling addiction, including self-exclusion programmes and brief online interventions. However, in order to be effective, online interventions should be developed specifically for Internet gamblers. This requires cooperation between independent researchers to design and evaluate these strategies, operators to enable access to relevant data, and regulators to require responsible gambling policies.