As a Muslim-majority country, laws surrounding gambling in Indonesia are very strict, with all forms of gambling forbidden under Sharia law. There are no legally licensed casinos, bookmakers or other paid wagering services in Indonesia, and online gambling is also considered illegal. We have done some research to explain more about Indonesia’s gambling laws and whether the ban applies to offshore casinos.
Online casino sites accepting players from Indonesia
Overview of Indonesia’s gambling laws
With an estimated 85% of Indonesia’s population being Muslim, Sharia law heavily dictates legislation within the country. Under Sharia law, gambling is deemed an immoral activity. The Islamic religion considers gambling as being addictive, evil and designed to rob people of their social responsibilities and it is therefore illegal in Indonesia.
To be very clear, all forms of gambling are illegal in Indonesia, including casino games, lotteries, bingo, sports betting and luck-based games – and these rules are heavily enforced. There are no licensed brick and mortar casinos in the country and penalties apply for anyone found offering or participating in gambling activities.
At one stage, a state-run lottery was offered in Indonesia, but the protests from Muslim citizens were so strong that it was discontinued. A thriving underground gambling industry exists, but police raid illicit rings regularly and are dedicated to uncovering such operations.
Is online gambling legal in Indonesia?
Under Sharia law, online gambling is considered illegal in Indonesia. There are no online casinos or betting sites licensed by Indonesian authorities and the Indonesian government has taken inspiration from some overseas countries by imposing a block on international casino sites and sports betting sites, restricting Indonesian citizens from accessing foreign gambling sites altogether. However, many citizens ignore these restrictions with the use of a VPN (virtual private network) as there are plenty of offshore casino sites that continue to offer their services to the Indonesian market.
There have been many reports of online video gaming sites in Indonesia offering paid wagering services on the sly, but these are doing so illegally and operators can face heavy penalties. Three major Indonesian ministries – the Social Affairs Ministry, the Religious Affairs Ministry and the Communications and Information Ministry – have been working together to put together official legislation banning online gambling at websites that have been granted Indonesian licenses to provide simplistic Internet games.
Many online casinos licensed by foreign jurisdictions accept Indonesian accounts, and although it is illegal for Indonesians to play there, there is little the Indonesian government can do to stop them. We were unable to find any information about the punishments for players found gambling online, but with penalties applying under standard gambling laws (with punishments that can include public caning), any Indonesian who frequents online gambling sites must be aware they are doing so illegally and at their own risk. Regardless of your religious beliefs, it is up to the individual to understand the laws that apply to them and act accordingly.
Online casinos accepting Indonesian players
As mentioned above, some of the world’s most reputable offshore casino sites accept players from Indonesia despite the country’s strict anti-gambling laws, including those online casinos listed in the casino table above. We have not yet heard of an international casino site being penalised for doing so, which is why operators continue to flout the laws. However, it is rare you will find an online casino site that offers services in the Indonesian Bahasa language or accepts deposits using IDR, with payments being converted into a more widely accepted currency.
With many offshore casino sites now accepting deposits using the cryptocurrency method Bitcoin, it is becoming easier for players from restricted markets to make anonymous deposits without the services of a bank or online payment service. Bitcoin is a complex payment method to understand, so many players continue to use web wallets and pre-paid methods to privately fund their accounts.
With Indonesia’s gambling laws heavily based around religious beliefs, it is safe to say the laws won’t change any time soon, although we will update this page if we hear of any developments in the future.
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