While online gambling is not a new concept in the United States, it is not entirely legal. In fact, some states have outlawed the practice. For example, in the state of California, online gambling is illegal, but in the state of New Jersey and the state of Nevada, it is legal. Other states, like Delaware, have begun the process of legalizing online gambling. The process of regulating the industry will continue on a state-by-state basis.
While online gambling is largely governed by state law, federal law can sometimes be a stumbling block in enforcing state laws. The Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006, for example, limits the ability of banks to transact with Internet gambling sites that are considered illegal. However, this act does not define what constitutes an illegal gambling site. In addition, the Wire Act, a federal law passed in 1961, had long been assumed to prohibit all forms of online gambling, but that law does not apply to poker sites, online casinos, or lottery sites.
When it comes to online gambling, there are two major types of casinos: download-based and web-based. Generally, download-based casinos require a software client to be installed on your computer. These types of casinos use the software client to connect to the casino service provider, handle contact, and store graphics and sound programs. While download-based online casinos are faster than their web-based counterparts, they also take longer to download, and they pose a risk of malware infections.