KYC is a necessary procedure at online casinos. It helps the casino to identify the player and be sure they are not involved in any criminal activity or money laundering. This way the casino can provide a safe environment for all players.
The KYC process is also called Know Your Customer Process and it is used by most online casinos to identify their customers (though according to casino-howto, there are some online casinos that do not require verification). The process usually includes two steps: identity verification and address verification. In rare cases, an online casino will ask you to provide the source of funds proof.
The identity verification requires the player to provide proof of their identity, which can be done with a government-issued ID, passport or driver's license. The second step of the KYC process is address verification that requires players to provide proof of their address like utility bills or bank statements that show the same address as on their ID card.
There are two different approaches to how KYC can be done
Some online casinos ask for documents right after you have registered an account. This is taking place in UK licensed casinos since the regulator requires to do so. It is quite a reasonable approach since this way a casino will make sure that, let’s say, underage gambling is not the case.
Other casinos require downloading documents only in case a player request a withdrawal. A good example would be Curacao licensed casinos. This does not mean that such casinos do not care about verification, they simply do not want to bother players with paperwork right away. Let’s be honest, not all players (to put it mildly) will end up with winnings so a decent chunk of players will be basically exempt from passing KYC.
The best way to pass KYC is to download ID before playing for real money
A good rule of thumb is to download all documents before you deposit real money. Why? Because that way you guarantee that your account is verified so in case you are lucky to win, the withdrawal will go smoothly.
Moreover, there are hundreds of let’s call them semi-scam casinos. They won’t steal your money right away, but they will try to find excuses to confiscate your balance. Their most common tactic is to say that there is something wrong with your documents.
That’s why it is very important to get your account verified and approved before you place any real money bets. Don’t make yourself a low-hanging fruit for them (better not to play at such casinos at all obviously, but sometimes it is hard to tell which one is legit and which is not)!
Of course, verifying your account from the very beginning won’t protect you from scam casinos, but it will be beneficial in case you are dealing with let’s call them opportunistic casinos.
A tip. Contact the casino’s support team (email them or via live chat) and ask them the complete package of documents you are supposed to provide. It will be a good idea to take screenshots of your messages. This way you will have strong evidence in case you will have to lodge a complaint with the gambling commission.
A list of documents you can be asked
- Proof of identity. One of the following: ID, passport or driver's license. Proof of identity documents are super basic and all online casinos that require verification will ask for them.
- Proof of address: One of the following: a bank statement with your name and address on it or a utility bill (phone, gas, electricity etc.) with your name and address on it. Proof of address documents are not required all the time. However, you have to keep in mind that a casino can request them so plan accordingly.
- Source of finds (online casinos request it very occasionally): One of the following: a payslip from your job, a bank statement that proves consistent legal income known as AML anti money laundering, any other documents that confirm the source of funds (could be royalties, dividends etc.)