Illegal Gambling Operators Use WeChat’s Virtual Red Envelopes to Lure Gamblers - VIP Casino Bonus Bonus Offers, Free Spins + Casino Bonuses

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Illegal Gambling Operators Use WeChat’s Virtual Red Envelopes to Lure Gamblers

Casino News Daily
Illegal Gambling Operators Use WeChat’s Virtual Red Envelopes to Lure Gamblers

Chinese police has recently cracked down on yet another illegal gambling ring that used WeChat to provide users of the extremely popular messaging app with the opportunity to punt on virtual red envelopes, the South China Morning Post reports citing information obtained by the Xinhua.

Handing red packets or red envelopes is an old Chinese tradition. The envelopes contain monetary gifts that are given during different holidays and other special occasions. The red color of the packets symbolizes prosperity and good luck and is believed to be fending off evil spirits.

WeChat, which has more than 1 billion users and is extremely popular with its Chinese customers, launched the digital equivalent of the old-time tradition during the Chinese New Year celebrations back in 2014 to create a booming market for the exchange of virtual red packages.

According to a report by the app’s parent company, Tencent, a total of 768 million WeChat users sent out digital red envelopes during this year’s Lunar New Year, which was celebrated on February 16.

With most forms of gambling being illegal in China, black market operators have spotted an opportunity to use the popular tradition as a means to lure gamblers while avoiding watchdogs. According to information from Shenzhen police authorities, a total of 71 people have been arrested over the past year for WeChat gambling-related activities. Other provinces across China have, too, detained a number of individuals on similar charges.

How Gambling on WeChat Red Packets Works

The Xinhua reports that gambling on red envelopes can take place in various ways on WeChat. Chat groups are one popular way. For instance, a given gambler could be required to pay out to everyone in a given group for picking the red packet with the smallest amount.

Betting on points is another popular form of gambling on the digital variant of the old-time tradition. If a gambler snares a red envelope with a value of CNY12.07, they will receive 9 points which is the sum of the last three digits of the face value of the envelope. The person with the highest score in a group wins the game and their points convert into money.

It has also been found that many organizers of such gambling activities are using robots to automatically calculate sums and thus improve their offering. The amounts of money spent on this type of activities with a clear gambling twist are usually much smaller than those other forms of illegal gambling involve, including gambling dens and illegal casinos. However, police officers say gambling via WeChat and other popular messaging platforms is really hard to detect as group chats are frequently changed to avoid being cracked down on.

According to recent data released by WeChat’s security center, it closed 8,000 gambling-related groups during the second quarter of the year. Here it is important to note that part of the Russia World Cup took place during that particular period, which resulted in a jump in illegal betting activity in China and across Asia as a whole.

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