Did you know that Malaysians are seriously into online gambling?
If you didn’t know, you’re not alone.
Many people aren’t aware of the massive online betting industry in Malaysia and how the industry is expanding.
Whether you’re an expat or a local, you may want to know more about the nation’s favorite pastime: online gaming. Learn more about the laws of online gambling in Malaysia.
The Digital Revolution
It comes as no surprise that during the last decade, the digital revolution has caused huge changes in our lifestyles. The gambling industry is only one part of society that’s been dramatically influenced by our new digital normal.
These days, gamblers can even gamble on their tablet or smartphone. They no longer have to waste time and energy getting to casinos, gambling arcades, or bingo rooms. Today, avid gamblers can gamble at any place or time that works for them.
Gambling has been around for centuries. Unlike today, people used to meet in dark rooms or on street corners with playing cards to gamble as entertainment.
Gambling became so popular that specialized gambling places popped up all over the place. In part, the popularity of gambling is due to the inherent risk-taking behaviour of humans.
The vicarious thrill and adrenaline rush involved in the hope of winning provides entertainment that’s hard to beat.
Of course, the gambling world is rapidly changing. These changes call for changes in gambling laws to suit the new ways in which people engage with gambling.
Malaysia’s Betting History
Malaysia has a rich history and diverse culture. It may come as a surprise that it also has a thriving gambling industry.
Despite this, Malaysia only has one official casino. This is the only legal casino in the whole country, which means that Malaysian citizens have had limited access to gambling in this way.
But today, thanks to the growing availability and popularity of online gambling websites, locals have thousands of betting options. Malaysians are now free to gamble in the comfort and privacy of their own homes.
One of the most important reasons that Malaysians love to gamble is that they’re able to legally play different casino games online with no worries of prosecution.
Interestingly, many Malaysian poker players developed and honed their craft by playing poker online. Their impressive poker strategies and techniques were all learned through the Internet. Many Malaysians don’t have the means to enter a casino, which means that online gambling makes more sense.
Also, online gambling introduced the use of debit and credit cards for playing with real money. This is an important convenience for people who don’t want to carry large sums of money when they’re betting.
What’s the Deal with Gambling in Malaysia?
Now that we know how people get around the fact that there’s only one casino in Malaysia, what are the legal issues relating to online gambling in Malaysia?
The Betting Act of 1953 states that ‘common betting houses’ are illegal in Malaysia, so anyone operating as a sports bookmaker or found betting in one is technically breaking the law.
The good news is that specific types of gambling are legal in the country. For example, lotteries are legal under the Lotteries Act of 1952. Horse racing and betting on horses is also legal and protected by the 1961 Racing Act.
More good news is that the status of online gambling in Malaysia is less clear-cut. The Betting Act makes no specific mention of online gambling. Until now, there have been no relevant amendments. What this means is that the market remains largely unregulated.
Despite this, the government does attempt to hinder citizens’ access to foreign sites. They instruct banks not to sanction transfers to overseas online casinos.
Across the country, Internet cafés are hubs for online gambling venues. This is bound to continue, as the ambiguous legislation surrounding online gambling means that many Malaysians gamble online without any trouble.
In line with this, some of the biggest online bookmakers and casinos around the globe happily accept players from Malaysia.
The Reality of Online Betting Malaysia
Online gambling is technically illegal in Malaysia, but the reality is that the laws passed decades ago and none of them mention the act of placing bets online.
In general, officials tolerate and overlook online gambling. At the very least, it’s casually brushed under the rug.
A huge number of Malaysians place bets over the internet daily. As we’ve mentioned, most major international betting sites accept customers from Malaysia and even process deposits and withdrawals in ringgits.
Keep in mind that Sharia law does hold sway in Malaysia. Technically, Sharia law makes gambling for Muslims a no-go. But each person has to make this choice for themselves. The reality is that most Malaysians and tourists who gamble online continue to do so without any stress.
As long as you stick with the major names in gambling, it’s simple and easy to make deposits, get paid, and place bets online.
The Next Steps
After reading this, you should know more about the Malaysia online casino situation.
It’s clear that online gaming has greatly affected the gambling industry in Malaysia and is now more accessible than ever. It’s changed the betting lifestyle of both avid gamblers and the younger generation alike.
Along with this, online gambling has also changed society’s perception of the sport. It’s important to do your research and reading this article was a good first step in further understanding the legal issues around gambling in Malaysia.
So, what are the next steps?