I’ve been obsessed with cryptocurrencies and their impact on the online gambling industry – and in fact the rest of the world – for a good couple of years now.
As I’ve learned more, I’ve come to understand that one of the driving forces behind the entire concept of cryptocurrencies is privacy. Crypto folks tend to be obsessed with it, and in fact the original cryptocurrency – Bitcoin – grew out of the cypherpunk movement, which is obsessed with personal liberty and the right to privacy.
Now, I’m no cypherpunk, but I can definitely get behind the idea of regaining some privacy in this modern society we live in. As it turns out, there is a specific group of cryptocurrencies specifically designed to facilitate private transactions. They can’t be traced, allow anonymous transactions between willing parties, and don’t leave a digital trail telling companies, governments, or anyone else what you’ve been buying or selling. The king of these privacy coins is called Monero, and I’m going to tell you all about it today.
So, what is Monero? How did it get started? What’s its purpose, and does Monero really work? I’ll examine all of these questions and try to answer the question of whether Monero is really suitable for gambling online in private.
A Short History of Monero
Once upon a time, lots of people believed that Bitcoin couldn’t be traced and was completely private. That illusion came crashing down when several high-profile arrests of darknet criminals and kingpins let the world know that Bitcoin was far from private and every transaction could, in fact, be traced.
Around 2012, a little-known privacy coin called Bytecoin began to make a name for itself as a privacy-coin. It used a technology called “CryptoNote” to group lots of transactions and public keys together, making it impossible to tell who sent it.
However, ByteCoin had some issues, and a few developers decided to “fork” the code and create a new version – Bitmonero. Eventually, they dropped the “Bit” part, and this coin came to be known simply as Monero.
Of the seven coders who founded Monero, only two have ever come forward publicly. The desire to remain in the shadows is woven into the very existence of this coin, so it’s no surprise that the people working on it might want to remain anonymous.
Since then, Monero has grown into the leading privacy-focused cryptocurrency which is used by millions of people from all over the planet. It’s one of the top cryptocurrencies, and hundreds of millions of dollars move around in the Monero ecosystem.
Perhaps inevitably, Monero has become associated with criminality and has become the leading currency of the darknet markets, but it’s also caught the attention of online gamblers, who rightly see it as a way to completely remove any link between their finances, their identities, and gambling.
So, how does Monero work? What is it about this cryptocurrency that makes it utterly impossible for even the most determined authorities to trace and track? Let me explain.
How Monero Works
Monero is private because it makes use of three unique pieces of technology – stealth addresses, ring signatures, and ring confidential transactions. These three combined make Monero just like digital cash – anonymous and untraceable.
We don’t need to go full crypto nerd here, but in a nutshell, these three pieces of tech achieve the following:
- Stealth Addresses generate new wallets for each transaction. Only you’ll have the key to open this wallet, and it won’t be in any way, shape, or form linked to your public Monero address. Learn more about Monero stealth addresses here.
- Ring Signatures batch lots of wallet addresses and keys together, mixing them up so that nobody can tell which address sent or received specific transactions.
- Ring Confidential Transactions make it impossible to tell how much was sent from any given addresses to another. Transactions are broken up and mixed, and all anyone would be able to find is a tangled spider web of messy crypto transactions to anonymous wallets.
This is all extremely cool, in my opinion. While I don’t even pretend to understand the finer details of how encryption and this sort of technology works on a detailed level, I do get the big picture, and the privacy of Monero makes intuitive sense to me.
So, let’s put all of this into the context of online gambling and how a typical transaction would work step-by-step.
- You’d buy some Monero, move it to a private wallet, and send it onto a cryptocurrency gambling site. Sending it from an exchange to a private wallet breaks the link between you and your crypto exchange account. As long as the wallet you send it to isn’t your public address, there’s no link to you whatsoever.
- From this address, you’d send it to your Monero gambling site. Transactions are fairly fast, so your Monero would be with you in minutes, and you could use it to gamble from there.
- If you won, you’d then withdraw your winnings to a stealth address. Remember, this is a one-time address which will be generated for you as a “Since Monero is inherently private, nobody will know you’re also the sender.
And that’s it – once your Monero jackpot is safely tucked away in one of your stealth addresses, it’s yours to do what you will with.
Nobody will even know you have it, although I’d always advise being honest and declaring it to tax authorities if taxes are applicable. You just never know when technological advancements will allow them to catch up with you, and as you probably know, tax evasion is what they put Al Capone away for, and it’s no joke.
This non-technical explanation of how Monero works should be enough to convince you that for all realistic purposes, Monero is completely untraceable. I’m not saying the NSA couldn’t trace you, because who the heck knows what sort of tech those guys are packing, but it’s highly unlikely the NSA is going to be looking into your online gambling transactions anytime soon.
Using Monero Gambling Sites
So, are Monero gambling sites worth checking out? How do they compare to Bitcoin gambling sites? Let me give you a quick overview of the pros and cons, young grasshopper, so that you may make your mind up for yourself.
The Benefits of Gambling with Monero
- You will enjoy, for all practical purposes, complete privacy
- There will be no link between your personal finances and online gambling
- Gambling with Monero provides a “workaround” for restrictive online gambling regulations
- Monero is likely to increase in value over time, so what you win now will be worth a lot more in the future
The Drawbacks of Gambling with Monero
- You’ll likely have to buy Bitcoin, then buy Monero, since there are still only a few XMR-USD exchanges
- Some crypto gambling sites do ask you to register your privacy details, undoing some of the privacy benefits
- If you get scammed for Monero, it can be difficult to prove since it’s so stealthy
- There aren’t as many Monero gambling sites as there are Litecoin gambling sites, for example
How to Get Some Monero to Gamble With
If you’re keen to try this Monero malarky and see what it’s all about, let me show you how it’s done. It’s a fairly simple process, but it does involve one extra step than gambling with Bitcoin or Bitcoin Cash would.
- Sign up at Coinbase and buy some Bitcoin. The guide I’ve just linked to will walk you through the whole process step by step.
- Transfer your Bitcoin to Binance or another cryptocurrency exchange that offers Monero.
- Once you have the Monero, move it to a stealth address or private wallet not linked to your personal details. You’ll have to verify your identity to use most cryptocurrency exchanges, so this undoes some of the privacy. If you really want to go off the radar, don’t forget this step.
- Register at a Monero gambling site. Some of these don’t even ask for your name. At some Monero dice sites, for example, you’ll just have to register a username and password.
- Send your Monero to the gambling site and have some fun. Play blackjack, roulette, slots, video poker, dice games, or whatever you like.
- If you win a Monero jackpot, hook me up since I’m the one who switched you on to all of this. Ha!
And that’s all there is to it. Yes, the extra steps in trading Bitcoin for Monero and moving the Monero to your private address are a bit of extra work, but if you want to enjoy the ultimate private online gambling experience, you’ll just have to deal with it.
So, Is Monero the Ultimate Privacy Coin for Gamblers?
Ultimate is such a heavy word, but I’d say yes, it’s as close as you’re going to get right now. There are a few other privacy coins out there such as Dash and Zcash, but honestly, not a single one of them can even touch Monero. This is the mac daddy of privacy coins, and in fact, I predict that it’s so effective that fairly soon some powerful government is going to try to ban it.
I also predict that this attempt will utterly fail. Monero is so good that it won’t be possible to ban it effectively, although it will be possible to scare some people off using it, however that’s not the same as stamping it out.
If you like the idea of gambling with Monero, I encourage you to give it a try at one of our cryptocurrency gambling sites. You’ll be able to find out exactly which ones accept Monero in their reviews. Enjoy, and remember, once you do discover how untraceable this crypto is, don’t get carried away!