Malaysian real money players can play online at certain Internet casino sites, so long as they are operations based offshore and not within Malaysia or anywhere else in Asia. This article clarifies current gambling laws and online betting regulations in Malaysia, and the best places for Malaysians to play slots and table games online safely and 100% legally.
Where to gamble online in Malaysia
Overview of gambling in Malaysia
Gambling finds itself in somewhat of a grey area in Malaysia. The country of more than 27 million people has a large Muslim population, with all ethnic-Malays required to be Sunni Muslim, and as such there are strict laws that forbidden gambling under Sharia Laws. These laws are enforced. However, they don’t stretch to tourists or non-Muslims residing in the country, although the government has attempted in the past to clamp down on online gambling. There has been an up-and-down relationship between gambling and Malay authorities, with sports betting having been legalised, then banned, then legalised again before being stamped out once more at the start of the 21st century. There is one land-based casino in Malaysia, but it is aimed at tourists, mostly Chinese tourists, who don’t classify as Muslim. Online gambling is outlawed, but, like many other countries in Asia, is rarely prosecutable.
Gambling is technically legal in Malaysia, then, but only for certain people. Muslims are not allowed to gamble, although there are still many casino gambling outlets, including slot machines, lottery offerings, and horse race betting. The general rule is that only licensed forms of gambling and betting are permitted: horse racing, for example, is the only licensed form of sports betting that is permitted.
There is one land-based casino in Malaysia, and it is the only place in the country where Malaysians are permitted to participate in casino table and card games in the country. Unfortunately, while the government has been firm on its application of gambling licensing, the country is rife with underground gambling dens, which may have contributed to the up-and-down nature of the legislation, and the constant debate regarding gambling’s legalisation.
There used to be gambling halls scattered throughout the country, and these were popular after-work locations for many millions of the people in Malaysia. However, the government outlawed these in 2000, fearing they were attracting criminal gangs and exposing gambling to young people.
There is one primary law that regulates gambling in Malaysia: the Betting Act of 1953. It’s gone through a number of amendments since then, mostly notably in 2006 when it added stricter penalties for those caught gambling at unlicensed venues. It classifies this as “unlawful” betting. Approved and licensed gambling is permitted, as clearly noted in the Act, and there is also a privately-run lottery, which was initially owned and operated by the government before being sold off.
Online casino and gambling laws in Malaysia
Online gambling is actually prohibited in Malaysia, however this generally relates to people operating online betting and gambling outfits within the country. As the government does not offer licenses to online gambling sites, many Malaysian players turn to online casinos to gamble. Internet cafes used to offer these services, but they are instead forced to block access to online casinos or face prosecution.
The general rule of thumb for Malaysian players is to avoid betting agencies and online casinos that are based anywhere in Asia. Thankfully, many of the online casinos we recommended are regulated by other independent bodies based around Europe and the UK. Further, while Malaysian banks are encouraged not to allow transfers of funds to overseas casinos, this is rarely enforced, and Malay players should have no issues moving funds onto a registered online casino account.
Can you gamble online from Malaysia?
Strictly speaking: no. As the Malaysian government doesn’t license these outfits, it is technically illegal to gamble online at non-licensed outfits within the country. However, the law never comes down on those that use international online casinos, even if there are restrictions in place to make it tougher to do so.
For example, many internet cafes are explicitly banned from allowing visitors to access online casinos. Doing so can lead to a large fine and perhaps even jail time. The same goes for the user. Doing so from your own home, however, comes with fewer risks, and this won’t be an issue. You can gamble online in Malaysia so long as you do so from your own personal home. It’s also advisable that you do so from a respected, trusted and regulated foreign body, as unregulated betting and online casinos such as the unlicensed ones within Malaysia may attract unwanted attention.
Best Malaysia casino sites
Slots Million: If you’re looking for online slots to play on desktop or mobile, Slots Million offers Malaysian players more than 1000 to choose from. There’s also a 100% sign-up bonus up to $100 for all Malaysian players that register.
Guts: Guts offers Malaysian players a 100% welcome bonus on sign up, up to $400 of the initial bonus. There’s also 100 free spins to use across the many different slots available to play online.
Wintingo: Malaysian players can visit Wintingo and choose from a selection of some of the internet’s best online slots and casino games, where they can play for fun or real money. The site offers 24/7 for Malaysian players, as well as a $500 sign-up bonus, and 50 free spins.
Dunder: Dunder is a popular choice for Malaysian players due to its high RTP (return to player) rate of 97%, as well as a great sign-up bonus of 200% of the matched deposit, up to $50, and 180 free spins on the Starburst slot.
MYR deposit option of online Malaysian gamblers
Unfortunately, due to the nature of gambling laws in Malaysia, which restrict the registration and licensing of online casinos, none of our recommended online casinos accept MYR as a direct currency. However, you can convert your funds from MYR into any of the popular currencies used on the sites, including USD, GBP, Euro, and AUD, using these deposit methods at casino sites.
- Credit & debit cards – MasterCard, Entropay virtual Visa, Visa
- e-Wallets – ecoPayz, Neteller, Skrill
- Pre-paid cards and vouchers – Flexepin, Paysafecard
- Direct wire transfers – Citadel Direct, direct bank wires