Facebook Online Gambling for Cash

Facebook recently launched its first virtual bingo site in the UK that offers real cash prizes.

Virtual Bingo on Facebook

UK players will now be able to wager for real cash on the new Facebook game called Bingo Friendzy. The US social network aims to introduce a plethora of virtual slot games within the near future. Facebook says that it has the proper security measures in place that will prevent minors (under the age of 18) from gambling. However, this might cause an outcry from parents whose children spend copious amount of time on the site.

Bingo Friendzy

Gambling giant Gamesys developed this new game. The company also operates well-known jackpot sites such as Sun Bingo and Caesars Casino. Users who register an account with Bingo Friendzy, must provide their personal details, date of birth and their bank particulars. Once this information has been provided customers can deposit cash amounts between £10 and £500.

Since Gamesys is based in Gibraltar it will not be regulated by the UK gambling commission. The UK government stresses that online gambling sites offering gambling services in the UK must adhere to the country’s strict regulatory regime.

Ofcom a UK media regulator said that more than two thirds of internet users in the UK are on Facebook. On average UK users spends six hours a month on Facebook, in March it was the most popular internet destination shortly on the heels of Google.

A spokesperson for Facebook said: “Facebook is a place that allows people to connect and share. Real money gaming is a popular and well-regulated activity in the UK and we are allowing a partner to offer their games to adult users on the Facebook platform in a safe and controlled manner.”

The social network giant said it does not want to venture into other markets, but it said that it will partner with other companies to offer new games in the UK. A lot of countries outside the UK have more stringent regulatory regimes for online gambling in place. For example, online gambling is still prohibited in the US except in certain states.

Facebook always wanted to expand into the online gambling market, since it is a billion dollar cash cow. Over a period of three months up and till June 30, out of Facebook’s £760m ($1.2 billion), £123m ($192m) in revenues came from games such as Zynga’s Farmville and Mafia Wars.

H2 Gambling Capital a market intelligence, predicts that licensed gambling will reach £10 billion by 2012. In 2009 European interactive gambling was worth €8.3 billion (£6.6 billion) and by the end of 2012 it will have an expected worth of €12.6 billion (£10 billion).



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