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Ahead of the Super Bowl, AG Nessel Reminds Consumers to Protect Themselves on Online Gambling Sites
February 08, 2024
LANSING – As we approach Super Bowl Sunday, Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel cautions residents of potential scams, risks, and sometimes deceptive internet gaming sites.
“The Super Bowl is the biggest game of the year for the players, the fans, the betting platforms and, sadly too, for the bad actors looking to rip off gambling Michiganders,” said Nessel.
Nessel reminds residents, first and foremost, that gambling should only be engaged in as a form of entertainment and she encourages Michigan residents to develop guidelines for when and how much to gamble if they are determined to participate in sports gambling. If gambling is a problem for you or someone in your life, please seek help through the Michigan Problem Gambling Help Line online or by calling 800-270-7117.
AG Nessel shares the following tips on how to protect yourself while gambling through online services in a video: Tips for Online Gamblers.
Michigan licensed internet sports betting platforms partner with Detroit and Tribal casinos to allow consumers to place bets through websites or mobile apps for a variety of sporting events. Use the following tips to protect yourself from predatory and misleading sports betting platforms:
- Research the online platform. Read reviews on sites like the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and Trust Pilot. Avoid reviews from sites that are connected to the sports betting industry.
- Read the fine print. Platforms sometimes require users to gamble their own money before accessing the advertised bonus. Not all bets count toward those promotions.
- Know the risks. Risk-free bets may not be what they seem. Some platforms are offering “risk-free bets” of $1,000 or more. Often, if a user loses their bets, they don’t get their money back. Instead, it becomes a credit that can only be used to gamble on that platform.
- Know the restrictions on accessing your account. Platforms reserve the right to restrict a user’s activity without warning — not just for suspicion of illegal conduct. Platforms have suspended users for having an “unfair advantage” or “irregular playing patterns.” Platforms have also been known to freeze accounts when someone is doing well or when trying to withdraw winnings.
If you plan to bet on the Super Bowl or other sporting events, check the Michigan Gaming Control Board (MGCB) website for a list of licensed internet sports betting providers and information on legal leagues and bets.
Residents can report illegal or suspicious gambling activity to the MGCB at:
- 888-314-2682 – a dedicated phone line for anonymous tips
- Email the MGCB – email tips are not anonymous
“There are many steps you can take to protect your identity online every day and not just on game day,” Nessel added. “Use unique passwords for each account, sign up for two factor authentication, and always exercise caution before clicking on any links in emails or texts you receive purporting to be from these sites.”
Leading up to last year's Super Bowl, a cyber-attack was discovered that affected popular sports gambling platforms DraftKings, FanDuel, and BetMGM. Engaging even with reputable gaming outlets can come with some risks, as these apps present to infiltrators and bad actors a target containing banking and financial information for likely millions of consumers.
In the aftermath of a breach, bad actors may try to log into the breached accounts, or any other account, using your email address and password. There are steps you can take to regain control and protect your personal information:
- Stay alert. If your personal information was exposed, the affected company should notify you. Save all notices and follow their recommended steps.
- Secure your accounts. Change all exposed passwords. If you use that password for other accounts, change those passwords as well. Always use strong passwords.
- Set up a two-step or multi-factor authentication requirement for each account. Most financial and social media sites have this option. This requires users to use a second form of identification, usually a PIN number, to log in.
- Freeze your credit if your social security number or financial information was included in the breach. This stops data thieves from opening an account in your name while the freeze is in place. You can place a credit freeze by contacting each of the three major credit bureaus:
Equifax online or by calling 888-378-4329
Experian online or by calling 888-397-3742
TransUnion online or by calling 800-680-7289
- Monitor your financial accounts and credit reports.
- Delete accounts you are not using.
Consumer protection is just a click or call away. To report a scam, file a complaint or get additional information, contact the Michigan Department of Attorney General: