ARB212: Bookmaker account verification
Every bookmaker will at some stage (usually before your first withdrawal) require you to verify your identity with them, in order to remove any withdrawal restrictions that are otherwise placed on your account in compliance with anti-money laundering laws. Reputable bookmakers will also not allow underage individuals or ‘problem gamblers’ to verify accounts with them.
The identity verification process is only performed once, and involves confirming your details against your official identification documents/details. Sports Arbitrage Australia recommends verifying your identity with bookmakers as soon as possible after registering new accounts.
Australian bookmakers can verify your identity online in real-time (usually the online verification page is presented to you upon first logging in, and a link to it is also included in the bookmaker’s welcome email). Online identity verification can be performed by way of the usual 100 points of identification:
- Australian drivers licence;
- Australian Medicare card;
- Australian passport; or
- Australian Electoral Roll address confirmation
Offshore bookmakers typically require scanned copies of identification documents to be emailed to them, and could include:
- Australian drivers licence;
- Australian passport;
- Recent address verification document (i.e. utility bill); or
- eWallet statement/bank statement (depending on your funding source)
Please note: depositing your funds from a Skrill Moneybookers eWallet account can result in automatic identity verification at some offshore bookmakers.
Verification of your withdrawal method
What bookmakers don’t make obvious to you is that there is a second internal verification process that happens behind the scenes and relates to your funding style. This second verification process is designed to identify arbers through analysis of deposit and withdrawal activity.
As you can appreciate, soft bookmakers aren’t fond of arbers taking their profits so will scrutinise the activity of new registrations in order to find them. Once flagged as an arber your betting limits will be reduced to small amounts so you will need to withdraw your funds from that bookmaker and find a new one with which to arb.
This second verification process occurs when you make your first withdrawal request from a soft bookmaker. For example, a careless arber will have a particular style to their deposit and withdrawal patterns, such as:
- deposit a large sum of money;
- make lots of large bets immediately; then
- withdraw a large sum of money on settlement of the bets.
In the above example, a soft bookmaker will flag the individual as an arber and limit their account quickly. This is because the deposit and withdrawal style is completely different to square punters who typically deposit small amounts of money, bet infrequently, and rarely withdraw money from their account.
The good news for arbers is that most soft bookmakers only perform this internal verification at the time of your first withdrawal. Once your first withdrawal has passed the internal verification test it is normally safe to make future withdrawals via the same method in any amount or at any time that suits you.
Accordingly, and as discussed in previous lessons, when depositing your funds into soft bookmaker accounts (i.e. all Australian bookmaker accounts), Sports Arbitrage Australia suggests adhering to the following three guidelines:
- Initial setup deposit: deposit enough to obtain the maximum available sign-up bonus and no more. Pocket the bonus, arb through your deposit and your bonus bet(s) – read our lesson on bonus scalping for details of extracting maximum value from bonus bets.
- Small withdrawal: if there are funds in your bookmaker account (likely) after your initial deposit and sign-up bonus have been bet through, then you should make a small withdrawal ($300 or less is fine) from your bookmaker account back into your eWallet. This is the step that needs to pass the bookmaker’s internal verification.
- Subsequent top up deposits: when a bookmaker account becomes low in funds you will need to replenish it to continue arbing. Be aware also that large deposits can be a red flag for bookmakers so limit your deposits to $1,000 per day if possible.
If you follow the guidelines above, you will delay being flagged as an arber and consequently extend your time before soft bookmakers reduce your betting limits. This will in turn increase the profitability of your overall arbitrage experience.