UEFA Euro 2020 kicks off on Friday after being delayed for a year due to the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.
It is running from 11 June to the final at Wembley in London on 11 July, across 11 different countries. Some of the other host cities include Glasgow, Amsterdam, Bucharest, Budapest, Copenhagen, Munich and Rome.
As with most sporting events, the competition will see a huge amount of sports betting, and although it is a legitimate industry, there will be a number of scammers looking to take advantage of people eager to place a bet.
Here are the top things to look out for:
Fraud and identity theft
Fraud can happen both on and offline, however, online fraudulent activity has been on the rise since the pandemic forced people to stay at home and conduct more activities online.
Ensuring you are betting with a reputable online provider can reduce the risk of scams, as well as making sure websites are not asking for unnecessary banking information or other personal information such as your passport number, home address or telephone number.
It is recommended that you search for the bookmaker’s licence details if you are unsure. Not all betting sites are regulated within strict authorities and it is advised to stay away from such bookmakers.
The most respected iGaming authorities include the MGA, GLA and the UKGC, and most websites list their licensing authority at the bottom of their homepage.
If a sportsbook offers a sign up bonus that seems too good to be true, chances are that it is and they are trying to lure in unsuspecting people.
Be careful if you are also contacted on the phone or by e-mail with a lucrative sign up offer or promotion by an operator you have not previously dealt with. This includes being lured into making a deposit.
Most scamming sportsbooks use illegal ways to obtain your contact information, such phishing and email address harvesting.
The Gambling Commission warned: “Do not send any money or personal details to anyone who says that you have won a prize or anything else in a lottery or sweepstake that you have not entered.
“You may be asked to pay a fee before the prize money is released: never respond to requests for advance payment.”
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If you see withdrawal delays from your account happening too often, without good reason, then it's best to avoid this bookmaker. Another issue can also be with winnings not being awarded altogether.
Some companies will have frequent changes on the terms of service, which is usually done to avoid awarding bonuses or winnings.
Oftentimes scam websites will also be constantly “under maintenance”. Although this is not a crystal-clear sign of fraudulent activity, this is usually how online criminals try to limit suspicion before they close shop.
Online reviews are one of the best ways to spot betting scams. Other people will share recommendations or negative experiences about bookmakers and online operators.
If a bookie is constantly receiving bad ratings, you should view it as a clear sign of a scam operator. Keep in mind however, that certain betting sites have only recently been launched and may not have been adequately reviewed.
Watch: Sweepstake Scams Shot Up 33% In 2020