It's not easy making rules for a U.S. law intended to deter illegal Internet gambling by choking off the flow of funds to offshore sites. That's because no one seems to agree on what the law covers.
Officials at the Treasury Department and the Federal Reserve found that out after sifting through more than 200 comments from banks, gamblers, church groups and members of Congress on recommendations for the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act of 2006. The basic sentiment was that their Oct. 4 proposal, which depends on financial institution enforcement, won't work.
The outcome will affect 23 million online gamblers, some 2,500 Internet sites and the growth of an industry with an estimated $15 billion in annual global revenue. The law bars financial institutions from processing payments involving Internet gambling -- with the notable exceptions of Indian gaming, state gaming and horse racing.