How is it possible for Australian residents to engage in playing their favourite pokies for real money when it’s pretty much considered to be an illegal activity in the country? Well, where there’s a will, there’s always a way.
Playing pokies online isn’t like playing them in a land-based establishment in Australia. In terms of the latter, the regulation of gambling is generally under the jurisdiction of each of the Australian states and territories. Therefore, New South Wales may regulate things differently to say Queensland. However, it’s quite the different scenario when you turn your attention to the online gambling world.
The entire Australian Commonwealth handles the legal status of online gambling, with the most important law surrounding this being the Interactive Gambling Act. This was passed by the country’s government in 2001 and has remained active ever since then. Under the laws of this Act, real-money online interactive gambling is not something that Australian players can participate in. This law also extends to the advertisement of such activities, too. The law also determines that interactive gambling services encompass online poker, casino games including pokies and sports betting while an event is in-play.
Due to this Act, many Australia-based gambling companies have taken the decision to not provide residents with gambling services. This doesn’t stop them from providing an online service to players from outside of Australia’s borders, but that’s not really of any help to avid pokie fans within the country. While it’s also understood to be illegal for Australians to access offshore platforms for their gambling needs, this is not something that they are punished for engaging in. It’s merely a technicality of the Act though, because there isn’t anything that specifically states that it is illegal for Australians to partake in online gambling, be that freeplay or real-money options. Instead, the laws in Australia are really aimed at operators choosing to provide their services to residents, rather than the people who choose to play at such sites.