Regulated Online Casinos
Mainstream gambling in the UK (aka commercial gambling) has been regulated by independent companies since 2005, including both offline, (betting bookmakers, local casinos etc), and online (online poker rooms, casinos etc). In the UK, the Gambling Commission works in conjunction with license authorities to regulate providers of betting and gaming to ensure that gambling is safe and fair for all players / punters.
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The good thing about such organisations that regulate the gaming companies, is that it keeps them on their toes by law. Licenses and regulations are not just an award or similar accolade, it binds the company to contracts by law to ensure they are running a proper business, just like any other company operating in the UK to supply fair gaming for all.
Games – Casino games that are provided by most of the casinos in the UK are regulated to make sure that the people who are playing get a fair deal and to eliminate unfair gaming. This applies to live games as well as Internet casino games (aka remote gaming) such as casino slots and blackjack. Regulated online casinos are required to obtain a remote casino operating license from the gambling commission if it wants to operate in the UK.
Software – Regulation of gambling activities also applies to the software that runs the casino games. This software connects the user with the casino via an online game such as slots or roulette and allows them to wager money. The gambling commission introduced technical standards for software providers to adhere to protect customers from fraud and foul play.
The list of technical standards is comprehensive in order to set the bar high and eliminate rogue providers. It includes handling and displaying information connected to the customer as well as keeping the details safe across a secure internet connection. Transactions should always be accessible from the customers end and rules of games and how to play should be clearly visible. The regulated software must also cater for many events and scenarios such as interrupted gambling (e.g. broken internet connection), financial limits (set by the casino or manually set by the player) along with skill and chance game information with autoplay features.
When it comes to online security in gambling, people often take for granted what goes in to keeping customer details safe and encrypted across a secure internet connection. The UK Gambling Commission set high standards of safety to casino providers to ensure that by meeting their criteria, customers can have peace of mind across the board knowing that details are not going to fall in to the wrong hands. This security criteria includes customer details being stored, transmitted across the internet from one point (customers computer) to another point (casino database), and the rules set out for processing and storing financial details such as credit / debit card info. Top branded software that is popular with regulated casinos online includes IGT, Playtech, NetEnt, Microgaming and Cryptologic.
For online casinos that are regulated by the UK gambling commission, customers can rest easy knowing that in order to operate in the UK, they are constantly under the watchful eye to ensure they are compliant. This means making sure they are operating inline with the 2005 gambling act, which also includes the protection of underage gambling, unlawful activies and how to avoid them, along with operating legally with permits and applications for areas they are covering. Along with this, providers of gambling have to operate within license conditions and codes of practice. This means having the correct license (remote for online gambling), making sure young people are not exploited and making them aware of the backlash they face if they fail to maintain a long list of standards outlined in the document.
Because of the wide array of sectors involved in gambling, (from offline horse betting to online roulette games), it is advisable to double check on the gambling providers website to see which of their products are licensed, where they are licensed for and whether you are happy that the provider is protecting customer interests in their supplying of gaming. Whilst it is not guaranteed that all UK operators are licensed and regulated in the UK, similar organisations have the same strict standards compared with the UK.
What people say about playing with a regulated online casino:
“Being a very cautious person anyway when it comes to the internet when i wanted to start playing games online i made sure i researched to make sure the company behind the fancy website was doing things properly and not ripping people off. The fact that the site was regulated put my mind at ease.” … “It’s always good to know that an authority is overseeing the casinos behaviour and slapping them on the wrists if it tries anything fishy.” … “Gambling regulation is a nightmare for rogue companies. The internet has opened up a can of worms for fraud, but when it comes to gambling i like to know that the site is licensed and regulated to protect myself and my fellow gamblers.”