- Illinois Poker Laws. The law in the State of Illinois as it relates to gambling is quite clear. In some states, whether or not the present law applies to playing poker, or in particular, playing poker online may be subject to at least some interpretation, however the law of.
- Yes, Illinois players can legally play online poker. But no, there are no online poker sites regulated by the state which residents can sign up and join. So in that respect, Illinois residents are out of luck. Having said that, there are tons of offshore online poker rooms.
- Illinois has been trying to legalize its online poker industry since 2013. In 2019, the state remains one of the top candidates for passing an online poker bill that would allow it to forge ahead and build a place where players can enjoy themselves a fair bit. At the end of last year, Illinois was most certainly worth a.
- Online poker Rules and laws of online poker in USA. Historical roots of poker are in New Orleans. Since invention of this game it has conquered world and became both a way to earn money and to spend spare time with friends. It has many fans from each corner of our planet. Though it is relatively an old game, waves of its popularity are not fading.
Illinois Online Poker Laws: Recent News. Illinois made online gambling news early in 2012 when two residents were charged with running an online gambling business. In May of 2012, State Senate President John Cullerton caused a stir by introducing legislation to regulate various forms of online gambling, including poker. Cullerton's legislation.
Last Updated February 18, 2021
Home to the “Windy City” and an eternal favorite of gamblers, Illinois is the base for a multitude of successful online and live tournament poker professionals. Poker seems to be in the state’s blood; President Obama often recalls his late-night games of poker played during his time at the Illinois Statehouse. In the live poker scene, locals have a wide variety of upcoming tournaments in poker clubs and riverboat casinos they can enter. Illinois has a more complicated relationship with real cash online poker.
In our guide to online poker in Illinois, we’ll explain and analyze the current gambling laws in Illinois, while discussing the poker sites which accept players from the state. We’ll discuss the odds that Illinois lawmakers regulate the Internet poker industry. This review of Illinois online poker laws will analyze whether existing gaming interests in the state support or oppose such laws.
Illinois Online Poker Guide
If you want to play online poker in IL, we suggest that you choose a room from our list below. The poker sites in this list have been chosen because they accept Illinois players, are regulated and – most importantly – have the softest games of all available Illinois online poker rooms. Here are the top legal Illinois online poker rooms
Is Online Poker Legal in Illinois?
Illinois is a state that does face some restrictions when it comes to playing poker online. Some sites that take players from other states don’t accept new players from Illinois. Read Poker Atlas for the latest updates on live poker events at local card clubs and the riverboat casino scene. As for online poker in Illinois, we have you covered.
Thankfully, you don’t have to worry about finding the right site that will allow you to sign up from Illinois; our list of real poker sites in Illinois on this page is comprised exclusively of rooms that take players from Illinois, saving your time for the online poker tables.
Best Online Poker Sites in Illinois for Real Money in 2021
Deposit Limits: $10 – $5,000
Accepts: Visa, Bitcoin, Mastercard, Bank Wire
Ignition is a popular option for players in the United States. They offer most popular cash game variants and more than $1.5 million in weekly online poker tournament guarantees. Ignition also offers Zone Poker, similar to Zoom Poker where you’re moved to a new table and dealt a new hand every time you fold.
Ignition Poker also offer a wide variety of poker promotions.
Join Ignition Poker here and get up to $2000 free!
Deposit Limits: $10 – $5,000
Accepts: Bitcoin, Visa, Bank Wire
Licensed by the Kahnawake Gaming Commission, Bovada is one of the oldest online poker sites servicing America. Bovada offers anonymous tables and a mobile-optimized design allowing play on all mobile platforms. The design makes it feel like you’re playing in Las Vegas rather than your home computer.
They offer a wide variety of cash games and tournaments with over $1.5 million in weekly guarantees.
Join Bovada Poker here and get a $500 bonus!
Deposit Limits: $25 – $25,000
Accepts: Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Visa, MasterCard, Money Transfers, Bank Wire
Sportsbetting.ag offers a robust online poker option with excellent cash game and tournament action. For cash games, they provide weekly cash leaderboards with $10,000 in prizes weekly. They offer over $45,000 in weekday guarantees, over $130,000 in guarantees on Saturday and over $275,000 in guarantees on Sunday.
If you like fast-fold poker variants like Zoom Poker, you’ll love Boost Poker. Get a new hand every time you fold in this fast-paced game.
Join Sportsbetting.ag – 100% up to $1000 for new US players!
All Poker and Gambling Laws by State
Illinois was close last year. There was a strong bill championed by State Representative Robert Rita and others, there were hearings, and there was widespread support for the sports betting part of the bill. Online poker and casino games were also included in that gambling expansion bill, along with newRead Full
- December 28th, 2018
Last year, the attempt to predict which states might join the ranks of those with legalized online poker was not very successful. In fact, only one state actually passed such legislation in 2018, but at the very last minute, on December 28, that state’s governor vetoed the bill. Oh, Michigan!Read Full
- October 18th, 2018
Illinois was one of only a few states that held open the possibility of legalizing online poker and other casino games in latter part of 2018. The consideration has been part of a larger gambling expansion bill that was and remains on the table for lawmakers this year. While onlineRead Full
- August 26th, 2018
While most other states that had considered online poker in 2018 abandoned those ideas earlier in the year, Illinois remained open to it. One lawmaker continues to champion one bill, and its future may depend on a legislative hearing set for October. The process of legalizing online gaming – whetherRead Full
- August 2nd, 2018
Most states that examined online poker in early 2018 have abandoned it for the year, as legislative sessions ended and no plans were made to revisit online gaming at all in the next few months. Illinois, it appears, is not one of those states. There wasn’t much hope placed inRead Full
- May 29th, 2018
Online poker and gambling became real legislative possibilities for Illinois in 2017. The Senate even passed a bill to legalize and regulate those internet games one year ago, but the companion bill on the House side never garnered enough support to even pass a committee. There has been no wordRead Full
Latest Updates Through 2021
Actions in the Illinois legislature in 2017 gave many legal online poker supporters hope that lawmakers were beginning to see the positives of legalizing and regulating online gaming. There was a bill that would’ve done just that for online poker and casino games, which passed the full Senate by a 42-10 vote in May, but the House bill never made it through committee as hearings were cancelled at the last minute.
However, online poker remained on the table going into 2018. State Representative Michael Zalewski’s H.479 was still being pushed, and he was confident that the right mix of gambling expansion projects would be appealing to a majority of lawmakers.
The tide began to turn not long after the United States Supreme Court overturned PASPA, which allowed New Jersey and all other states to address sports betting as they chose. Supporters of online gambling revised SB.7 to add daily fantasy sports and sports betting to the bill, but it happened late in the session and too close to its closing date of May 31.
Senate Bill 7 became a bipartisan bill, with several Republican and Democratic sponsors: Senators Terry Link, Dave Syverson, Mattie Hunter, and Donne Trotter; and Representatives Robert Rita, Rita Mayfield, Chad Hays, and Litesa Wallace. The proposal included articles for the “Fantasy Sports Act,” “Internet Gaming Act,” and “Sports Wagering Act.” Importantly, though, the bill lacked details about tax rates, licensing, and the regulatory framework.
One of those sponsors, Rita, then took an opportunity in the summer of 2018 to announce two hearings to discuss gambling expansion for Illinois. The first was held on August 22 in Chicago, and it was more than four hours of debate featuring members of joint committees. The main topics were new land-based casinos and expanded numbers of video gaming terminals.
The second hearing in early October was held in Springfield and focused heavily on sports betting. Horse racing takes precedence in Illinois and it became clear that there were many issues to be worked out before a solid bill could be drafted and presented to legalize sports betting, but it will be a priority for many lawmakers in 2019. This may mean that SB.0007 could be discarded and rewritten, and it is unclear whether online poker and casino games will be included in a new online gambling bill to be considered in early 2019.
Some speculation was correct for 2019 in that lawmakers were ready to pull together for gambling expansion in the state of Illinois. However, online poker and other forms of internet gambling were not a part of that picture. No matter the intentions of some lawmakers, it did not happen.
In the summer of 2019, a massive gambling expansion bill passed through the legislature after months of negotiations and discussions. Governor J.B. Pritzker signed it into law. It included the legalization of video gaming terminal (VGT) establishments, five new casinos in Illinois, a mega-casino in Chicago, a new racetrack, slot machines and table games in racetracks (making them racinos), and sports betting.
There will be 16 retail sportsbooks in the state and three online sportsbooks for Illinois. Casinos, racetracks, and stadiums may begin applying for sports betting licenses in December 2019. Sports betting went live in land-based establishments and online in March 2020.
The future for online poker and internet slot and table games remains unknown. The inability to include online gambling into the omnibus bill was disappointing, and it is not known if there will be an opportunity to legalize those online games in 2021.
|State Code Section(s)||230.ICLS.5-40; 720.ICLS.5.28|
|Definition of Gambling & Player||Person Commits Gambling:Knowingly plays a game of chance or skill for money or other thing of value; or knowingly establishes, maintains, or operates an internet site that permits a person to play a game of chance or skill for money or other thing of value by means of the Internet or to make a wager upon the result of any game, contest, political nomination, appointment, or election by means of the Internet.|
|Online Poker/Gambling||Multiple attempts to legalize online poker and internet gaming have happened in the last decade, but the most recent pieces of legislation came close to passage. The 2017 bill for online poker was paired with casino expansion and passed the Senate but not the House. There is talk of an omnibus bill that will include online gambling with other forms of gambling expansion in 2018 or 2019.|
|Live Poker||Live poker is permitted in all of the casinos in Illinois, and the poker rooms offer cash games and tournaments.|
|Casinos||The Riverboat Gambling Act permitted 10 fully-functional casinos to be established on riverboats, though the strict rules have been eased somewhat. There have been proposals to establish more casinos in Illinois, most recently via bills in 2017 and 2018. Lawmakers have come surprisingly close to expanding the number of casinos in the state.|
|Sports Betting||A bill to legalize sports betting in Illinois casinos was introduced in 2018 and is still pending..|
|DFS||A 2017 proposal for daily fantasy sports carried over into 2018 and remains open for consideration, possibly as a part of a larger gambling expansion bill going forward.|
|Other Forms of Gambling||Horse racing, pari-mutuel betting, bingo, raffles, pull-tabs, charitable gambling, poker runs, jar games, Native American gaming, video gaming terminals.|
Illinois Law and Online Poker
So where does Illinois stand when it comes to the law and online poker? The state does address the issue of online gambling directly in its law, so let’s talk a bit more about that part of the Illinois statute and a few other aspects that should be of interest to the typical online poker player.
First, what constitutes gambling in Illinois? The law is pretty clear; gambling occurs when someone
“plays a game of chance or skill for money or other thing of value” (Section 28-1).
The only exceptions are state-approved forms of gambling.
Violation of that section as a player is a class A misdemeanor (Section 28-1(c)). Illinois does not have a history of aggressively pursuing mere participants in illegal gambling.
What does Illinois law have to say about online gambling? It is illegal if someone plays poker online?
“knowingly establishes, maintains, or operates an internet site that permits a person to play a game of chance or skill for money or other thing of value by means of the internet or to make a wager upon the result of any game, contest, political nomination, appointment, or election by means of the internet” (Section 28-1(12)).”
Nothing in the section (or in any other part of Illinois law) appears to directly address the act of participating on such “internet sites” as a mere player.
What you’re left with is a situation that, to some degree, lacks legal clarity. However, that should not be mistaken as a blanket endorsement that all online gambling activity is explicitly legal. In such cases of uncertainty, players should start by reviewing the laws of Illinois personally, and then continue by consulting a lawyer if questions persist.
Illinois Gambling Guide
Most accounts of Illinois history assign gambling an early and prominent role in the story of the state. Whether through the lotteries of early settlers, the famous riverboat gambling ships that cruised Illinois waters during the 1800s or the ubiquitous, ever-present gambling halls of Chicago, you’d be hard-pressed to pick a point in the Illinois timeline that didn’t involve gambling in some way, shape or form.
Today’s gambling industry in Illinois is a result of nearly forty years of legislative shifts toward gambling expansion, one that began in 1974 with the authorization of the state lottery. Online poker legislation is an extension of those legislative trends, but like many states with a substantial land-based gambling industry, the existing interests complicate iGaming bills.
What Gambling is Regulated in Illinois?
Most popular forms of regulated gambling are permitted under Illinois law. In addition to the state lottery and the multiple casinos spread across the state, there is also legal pari-mutuel wagering in Illinois and a wide slate of charitable gambling formats.
Illinois has vastly expanded its gambling offerings in recent years, most extensively with a massive gambling expansion bill in 2019.
There had been more than 32,561 video gaming terminals (VGTs) in Illinois, and more were installed when the new law was implemented in 2020 with the creation of full VGT establishments. There were also 10 casinos in the state, but that was expanded this year to allow for five new casinos to be built and a mega-casino/resort in the city of Chicago. And on top of the three-horse racing tracks in Illinois already, an additional one was approved in 2019. Racetracks will also be able to expand to become racinos and offer up to 1,200 casino games, including slots and table games.
Online lottery games have been available for some time, but sports betting will now be available online. In 2021, there will be three online sportsbooks to complement the 16 retail sportsbooks. In addition, there will be 2,500 sports betting lottery kiosks permitted throughout the state.
IL Online Poker and Gambling Facts: Objective Sources
ICGA . The Illinois Casino Gaming Association is a trade group representing the interests of many of Illinois’ casinos. The group’s site provides useful research material for those interested in the Illinois gambling industry.
Illinois Gaming Board. The official site for the state gaming board is the definitive resource for legal and regulatory information concerning gambling in Illinois. Get information on meetings, measures, help with problem gambling and self-exclusion along with a wealth of statistical information at the IGB website.
ICPG The online home for the Illinois Council on Problem Gambling is a central location providing access to a 24-hour helpline, speakers, and resources for educators, families and players. The ICPG is opposed to poker laws that expand and regulate the industry.
Famous Illinois Poker Players
There are actually a number of points at which the history of poker and the history of Illinois intersect. One example is the story of James Butler Hickok, better known as “Wild Bill.” It was Hickok’s death that gave a name to the now-famous “dead mans hand” – two pair, aces and eights, said to be held by the lawman when he was shot during a poker game.
Another example comes in the colorful tale of Nick “The Greek” Dandolos, who called Chicago home for much of his life. Dandolos was part of the mythic (and much debated) match up with Johnny Moss that is often cited as the template for the World Series of Poker. A final, and more modern, illustration of the shared history between poker and Illinois is author and poker player Jim McManus, who lives in the state.
The plethora of live poker rooms in Illinois have allowed poker players to flourish in Illinois through the years. Even so, many of the state’s most famous players garnered most of their experience online.
Almost all of the top live tournament earners in Illinois were famous first for their online play, like Connor Drinan, Mohsin Charania, Gavin Griffin, and Kevin Saul. Their online poker earnings are not even included in the numbers below, which goes to show how well most of them crossed over from online to live play.
The top-ranked players from Illinois, as of 2019, are as follows:
1. Connor Drinan ($11.3 million)
2. Mohsin Charania ($6.2 million)
3. Gavin Griffin ($5.1 million)
4. Ryan Tosoc ($4.8 million)
5. Aaron Massey ($4.1 million)
6. Jason Wheeler ($4 million)
7. Ravi Raghavan ($4 million)
8. Kevin Saul ($3.7 million)
9. Chris Moor ($3.6 million)
10. Kyle Julius ($3.5 million)
Sources & Citations For This Article on Illinois Online Poker
Can You Play Online Poker in Illinois?
Illinois is known as the 'Land of Lincoln' and home to the Windy City. This gambling-friendly state provides tons of options for those who love to play. However, Illinois law does not permit casinos to stay open 24*7. This means the only way for the poker aficionados to find the best poker site 2020 is to enjoy online poker in IL.
Illinois has taken the necessary steps to become a gambling powerhouse. But failed many times. That means till date, the legislators of Illinois have not passed a law officially that would allow iGaming and poker site providers to operate within the state's limit. Illinois is on a list of states seriously taking into account the merits of real cash online poker and gambling. Maybe we will see IL internet poker and gambling bills come by the next coming year. in 2021.
For the poker fanatics within the Illinois borders who can’t wait for online poker to become a reality, they can choose from our advised offshore gambling sites. Whether you are a poker pro or completely new to casino games, you will get an incredible experience by trying our poker rooms - typically for online poker free play.
However, the Illinois citizens looking to get in on the real money poker action will likely need to wait a little bit longer. To understand the background of online poker, you need to dive into online gambling and online poker laws in Illinois.
Summary of Illinois Gambling & Poker Laws
Illinois makes it a crime to operate a game of chance over the web. The only exception to this is the Illinois Lottery and horse racing. The state of Illinois is one of the few states that use the phrase “online poker” in state law. You can check Item 12 of Article 28, Section 1. This says:
'It is illegal for any Illinois resident to operate an Internet website that allows a person to play a game of skill or chance for money or other things using the internet.”
This means that the lovers of online poker in IL can be charged for playing poker online if found gambling illegally. However, no user has been persecuted yet for playing games online with an offshore gambling company.
We advise you to take expert legal advice in case you have any queries regarding Illinois’ gambling statues. Let’s go in-depth with Illinois Gambling & Poker Law 2020.
- Online Poker/Gambling Many attempts have been made to legalize online poker and online gaming in Illinois. But all failed. The state is currently working on the expansion to regulate poker and casino online and in licensed land-based casinos.
- Live Poker Live poker is allowed in all physical existing and new casinos in Illinois. The poker rooms provide cash tournaments and games.
- Casinos As per the Riverboat Gambling Act, just 10 fully-functional casinos are permitted to be established on riverboats. Lawmakers are planning to expand the number in the state.
- Sports Betting Online sports betting is totally legal in Illinois as long as they are located within state lines. Governor J.B. Pritzker signed legislation in June 2019 that allows this activity in the state.
- Fantasy Sports Although the legality of daily fantasy sports in Illinois is a bit of a grey area, top DFS websites like FanDuel, DraftKings, Fantasy Draft, and Yahoo operate in the state.
- Esports A 2017 bill for DFS carried over into 2018 and stays open for consideration. Esports gambling is available at countless online sportsbooks and even dedicated esports bookies.
- Other Gambling Options Pari-mutuel betting, lotteries, horse racing, charitable bingo, raffles, poker runs, video games, Native American gaming, jar games, and pull-tabs are all legal in Illinois.
History of Poker and Online Poker in Illinois
Illinois, mainly Chicago, has had a long colorful history of gambling. Betting activities in Illinois date way back to before Christopher Columbus crossed the Atlantic Ocean. Ruins from Cahokia signify that gambling was taking place as early as 600 A.D.
The state has been focusing on the legalization of Illinois online poker and other internet gaming forms since 2013. In that year, the state legislators debated on gambling expansion that permits land-based casinos outside of the riverboat requirements. They wanted to include online gambling in the bill to keep up with states considering the same concept.
However, worries from the governor and many lawmakers prompted those sections to be eliminated from the bill. In 2013, Senators Terry Link and Donne Trotter introduced an online gambling provision in SB1739.
An informal court hearing was held on online gambling in 2014, but just a little progress was made. On May 31st, 2017, the Illinois Senate passed a bill legalizing online poker. The Illinois House must now approve the bill of Representatives to be signed. The state is no closer to resolving the expansion of live casinos today as they were in 2014. Bills are filed yearly, but unfortunately, they continue to fail.
Illinois implemented online gambling as a whole in 2017. The live casino expansion issue finally gets resolved in 2018. Later, H.479 was introduced and failed again. But it rose back to life in 2018. Thanks to the Illinois House Representative Michael Zalewski, who pushed it again in 2018.
Online Poker in Illinois
At the federal level, all the laws, including the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act (2006), deal with those operating and managing the gambling sites.
Although Illinois does have serious anti-gambling statutes on the books, charges have never been imposed against anyone in the country caught for playing cards and other gaming online with an offshore firm.
If you desire to play online poker in Illinois, Choose from our online poker rooms list. They are not just safe but also offer the most protected experiences.
Is Online Poker Legal in Illinois?
Illinois State has no explicit mention if online poker rooms is a legal or illegal activity. Only legal activities in Illinois include horse racing, lotteries, charitable gambling, and pari-mutuel wagering.
Illinois law makes it illicit for a company to run online sites that let players bet on games of chance or skill. However, you will not face any legal persecution if you switch on your computer and play poker from the inside border of Illinois. Mega millions jackpot online. The state presently criminalizes playing online poker in Illinois for real money outside its confines.
But there is one exception to the Illinois law. Games of chance or skill that do not require a player to put up a buy-in to take part are legal. Websites that provide freeroll online poker tournaments would be legit under Illinois law.
The state recently focused on expanding the number of places, types, and ways of gambling thanks to the 2019 2019 Illinois Gambling Act. The new law, 2019, legalized sports betting in online bookies and physical sportsbooks. However, it does not legalize online poker or other types of online casino games.
Delaware, Nevada, New Jersey, West Virginia, or Pennsylvania currently allow players to enjoy legal and regulated online poker for real money. This means Illinois is close to opening the online poker market but has not legalized the exciting game yet. Online poker in Illinois is a fun way to pass the time. Therefore, start your poker-playing online journey today right from your home by picking a site from the list of top-rated gambling firms.
Where Can I Play Online Poker Legal in Illinois?
Illinois has stringent laws regarding gambling. In comparison to other states, they actually include provisions mentioning real money gaming over the web. You will be able to play poker for free online if you reside in Illinois.
There are tons of desktop and mobile poker sites online that accept Illinois players. With a mobile poker website, you can just login from anywhere in the US state and enjoy online poker in Illinois for real money or free. However, not all are created equal. Few of them are untrustworthy, and your money is also at a big risk.
It’s worth choosing the best online poker sites that offer incredible gaming action, speedy payouts, excellent bonuses, and a trustworthy experience. Major online poker brands that you can choose to play poker include:
These firms have earned a good reputation for honesty and integrity. Regardless of the poker rooms, you choose to partner with a brand that offers fair poker games, prompt payment methods, and robust customer support.
Where Does Illinois Offer Legal Online Gambling?
Poker Rooms Illinois
Today, gamblers have access to numerous poker sites online regulated in the Caribbean, Central, and South America. Few of them accept players from the United States.
Remember, all of the sites that are based offshore in other jurisdictions do have any online gaming regulatory system in place. Thus, make sure the online gambling site has obtained the necessary license and good reputation.
The best poker sites for money also incentivize new players and lure loyal customers using rewarding poker bonuses.
Will Illinois Regulate Online Poker
Illinois is the main candidate to legalize and regulate poker due to the big-budget problems and a huge population. There have been regular attempts to pass legislation that would allow a licensed internet poker in the State. The latest effort was the gambling expansion in 2019.
Maybe the lawmakers understand the perks of online gambling and poker sites. It seems that Illinois seems to be getting an internet gambling bill and online poker bill slowly. But only time will tell at this point.
Illinois will be one of the states considering the regulation of real money online poker and other online gaming in the upcoming years. That means the idea of state-regulated online gambling and legit Internet poker websites in IL in 2020 may become a reality.
US Poker Laws 2020 - Illinois FAQ
Below are the top 5 commonly asked questions and their answers regarding online poker in IL:
Can I Play Online Poker in Illinois for Money?
Can I play online poker in Illinois is the most common question in the mind of poker players across the state. The answer is a little bit cloudy. That means the legality of playing Internet poker for real money remains in the gray area for IL residents.
The state has stringent gambling laws and banned users from creating a new account. If you are able to, you will only be able to just play free money games.
Online Poker Real Money Illinois
If you desire to play real money online poker, you might face many problems in creating a new online poker account.
What is the Minimum Age for Gambling in Illinois?
The minimum age to gamble in Illinois is eighteen. If you are 18 or older, you can freely buy lottery tickets, bet on races, and engage in gambling. However, you need to be 21 years old for casino betting.
In Illinois, it also includes Poker. These same rules apply to online gambling and online poker in Illinois. Ensure you stay in compliance with the regulations in your local area.
Can I Play Online Poker On a Mobile in Illinois?
Nowadays, poker fanatics are looking to play a wide variety of poker games everywhere they head out. There are tons of real money mobile poker sites and best poker apps. They allow you access and play poker on a wide variety of mobiles on-the-go.
Users can even receive real money bonuses along their way. Mobile poker apps built by the expert developers offer an incredible experience at your fingertips. Download mobile poker apps 2020 and start playing internet poker anytime and anywhere.
Can I Play PokerStars in Illinois Using Real Money?
Playing online poker in Illinois for real money is illegal. You cannot access the real money games on PokerStars if you reside within the state borders. However, if you want to taste the PokerStars software from Illinois, you can use the PokerStars Play free platform.
How Does an Online Poker Site Know Where the User is Playing from?
Online poker sites use tons of methods to verify that users are currently accessing the site from a place that legally permits internet poker play.
The majority of them consider your IP address. Few of them blend that IP address with other techniques such as triangulation via cell phone towers. This helps them determine that your cell phone is currently in your control and in a legal state.