Before you play online poker for real money, you should first find out if it’s legal in your country. Most online poker rooms require players to provide their social security number and date of birth to register. They may also require your full name and address. You should also get an IP PIN from the IRS, since tax return fraud is becoming a common practice. You should keep this number handy in general, in case you ever need it. Once you’ve found out if online poker is legal in your country, you can fund your account and start playing.
If you’re using a downloadable poker client, make sure that it’s stable. This can be especially frustrating during bad luck streaks. Early online poker sites were notorious for experiencing this issue, but this problem has since diminished with more advanced downloadable software. However, it can still be an issue on mobile and instant play poker. Whether you’re using a desktop or a tablet, it’s crucial to make sure the poker software is stable and works well on all devices.
It’s also important to check if online poker sites are legal in your state. Only a few states have legalized online poker, and operators that don’t operate in these states are operating illegally. However, regulated online poker sites must be run by US-based companies. Big international brands that operate online poker sites should also create US companies to be fully responsible for their activities. That way, they can guarantee that their players are safe.
In 2003, Chris Moneymaker won the Main Event of PokerStars. This success inspired many players to play online. Online poker sites grew rapidly. Then, the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (UIGEA) was passed. The UIGEA made transactions between offshore websites and Americans illegal. Although some sites still operate, they remained accessible to U.S. players for several years. So what’s the status of US-licensed online poker?
Obviously, there are advantages to playing online and live. While live players often call poorly preflop and are more likely to make big postflop calls, online players tend to be more confident in their postflop calls. Online players have the advantage because they can just click “Call” to let someone know what their hand is. Plus, they don’t face the embarrassment of guessing incorrectly. And if you’re a beginner, there are no better resources for getting started than online.
Although it may not seem like it, many US states are beginning to legalize online poker. Delaware was the first state to regulate online poker, and the state has since signed the Delaware Gaming Competitiveness Act. Currently, online poker is legal in Delaware, Nevada, and Michigan. Despite the challenges, a number of offshore poker operators are open to US players. While some states are still working out the legalities of online poker, many states will have a legal online poker market within the next few years.
While it may be tempting to question whether online poker is rigged, the industry itself is very transparent. PokerStars uses an independent auditing firm to ensure that the games are random. If a major poker site is caught using rigged cards, they would be damaged by this revelation. The reason is that it would be a lot harder to run a rigged poker site than a legitimate one. Nonetheless, players should be aware that the game is legitimate and safe to play.