How to file a complaint – Dealing with scam bookmakers

While betting online, it is inevitable that you will come across certain betting sites that might seem too good to be true. In many cases, these are simply scam bookmakers who try to cheat you into making a deposit. When you decide to make a withdrawal, they will use the age old excuse of technical problems, while at the same time reassure you to keep gambling, as your money is supposedly totally safe. We are all aware that some betting sites are out there to scam us. The question is, how do you tell if a bookie tries to cheat you and what to do in case you fall for a bookmaker's fraud?

5 common scam bookmakers tricks

  1. Out of this world bonuses. If you find a sportsbook bonus that seems too good to be true, e.g. 5 times your first deposit, chances are that a bookie is trying to suck you into making a deposit.

  2. Withdrawals not available. Perhaps the most common trick, that goes hand in hand with the poorest excuses. Provided that you have completed the KYC verification, there is no reason for a lawful bookmaker to refuse a withdrawal request.

  3. Shady marketing. Scam bookmakers will try to promote their “services” by using illegally obtained personal information, such as your e-mail or phone number. Legitimate betting sites, will only contact you, if you have shared certain info with them.

  4. Winnings not awarded. Waiting too long to receive a payout is obviously frustrating, however after a couple of hours at worse, your winnings should be in your balance. If a bookie tells you that you breached a rule or your bet was not confirmed due to technical issues, you have most probably been scammed.

  5. Non regulated. This is the most crucial as well as most obvious way of telling whether a betting site is legitimate or not. You can check the regulatory authority’s details on the bottom of every betting company’s website. If such information is not visible, then you are dealing with a scam bookmaker.

How can you avoid being scammed

Apart from the common tells mentioned above, there are a few tricks that you can use to spot a scam bookie, or even prove that you are following the rules when dealing with a legitimate bookmaker. First of all, make sure to play by the book. Each and every rule is specifically stated on the terms and conditions. If a bookmaker is claiming that you have violated one of these rules, you can easily find out if there is any truth in these allegations.

Choosing a respected and well regulated betting company is also crucial. Top bookmakers will always obey the rules a regulatory authority sets, in order to maintain their licenses and keep their reputation untarnished. Additionally, make sure to undergo the KYC verification process, before you decide to make a deposit. If this procedure is successfully completed, then your personal information will be documented on the regulatory authority’s database. Given that your identity will be recognized, any complaints against bookmakers, will be taken much more seriously.

How to report a bookmaker

First and foremost, we have to clarify that you must always choose regulated betting sites, despite how enticing an unregulated bookmaker offer might seem. However, in case a regulated website tries to scam you, you can either contact the support team, by filling in the form on the submit a complaint page, or directly contact the regulatory authority. You can also avoid dealing with scam bookmakers altogether, by punting on the verified online betting sites, tried and tested by our team of experts.

What do you need in order to file a complaint

You simply should present three key things:

  • The name of your bookmaker and its license number (visible on the bottom of the site)

  • The nature of your complaint (e.g. can’t make a withdrawal)

  • A copy of the conversation where the bookie’s support team refused to comply to the rules.

If your complaint is valid, then you will be reimbursed to the full amount of your deducted funds, as most regulators are strict but fair in cases of fraud.

File a complaint form

Revolut betting sitesEvery regulatory authorities has a certain page, dedicated to player complaints towards scam bookmakers. We will present you with the online gaming support page of the Malta Gaming Authority, in order to showcase the steps you should follow.


  • Fill in your personal information such as name, e-mail address, phone number and country of residence.
  • Enter your betting account information, where you must state which online betting site is trying to cheat you and your username.
  • State the date and time of the incident, the disputed amount and the name of the game (if it concerns non received winnings).
  • Describe exactly what has happened and upload any files that prove that a betting site is trying to scam you (screenshots, text files)

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