In order to provide online casino services, an operator must be licensed and regulated by the relevant governing bodies. That’s the first step in regards to providing a secure playing environment but there are more tests once that operator has become established.
A number of bodies monitor those casinos to ensure that they are trading fairly and honestly. Many are optional and don’t insist on the operator signing up but, by joining, they can offer the customer extra trust and confidence.
Here are the measures that are currently in place.
What are Casino Random Number Generators (RNGs)?
One way to measure casino compliance is to ensure that results from roulette, slots, card games and all other games on the schedule are fair and random. A Casino Random Number Generator (RNG) is a piece of software that guarantees that every spin of the slot reels returns a random result.
Over time, each game has an average Return to Player percentage but every spin must not produce a predetermined outcome. The system is prevalent in slots but it’s also used in roulette and card games that use automated software. Being certified for RNGs is a sure sign of openness and fair play.
eCOGRA – eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance
eCOGRA is an independent gambling body set up in the UK in 2003. Those eCOGRA certified casinos have to focus on fair play, protection of their players and general responsible conduct. Almost 80 providers are currently on their books and the list includes many of the leading brands.
eCOGRA like to focus on the issues regarding vulnerable customers and to prevent any underage gambling. As a result, those sites who are affiliated to the body must take great steps to promote responsible gambling.
There is an established eCOGRA complaints procedure which can adjudicate on any issues that arise with an operator that is certified by the body.
IBAS – Independent Betting Adjudication Service
As the name suggests, the main role of ibas is to adjudicate on any disputes that a customer may have with their operator. As such, they are a form of Ombudsman who are there to judge fairly and to provide a resolution that is intended to suit all parties.
The company has a long history having been set up in 1998 when the online gambling market was still in its infancy. While the name ‘betting’ features prominently in the title, the organisation also covers casino, bingo and more.
If a chosen operator is linked in with ibas, the first step is to go through their regular customer service resolution centre. If the issue cannot be resolved, ibas are there to provide an independent and fair judgement.
iTech Labs are another important organisation within the realms of casino compliance. Their main objective is to certify online gaming systems and to apply quality assurance testing in order to ensure that those platforms are safe and secure.
The company gets involved with Random Number Generator certification and iTech Labs are one of the first organizations that operators look to turn to. They also judge Return to Player percentages on casino games. Overall, they are in place to ensure that this level of security is balanced with a degree of fair play online.
When we ask what is iGaming there can be a number of different answers. For some, this is a generic term used to describe the entire gambling industry but, over at Gaming Labs, it relates to something far more specific.
This organization is involved in regulating the gambling sector and introducing regulatory frameworks for individual countries around the world. Operators can go to iGaming and get certain certifications as part of their overall casino compliance strategy.
The body is a comprehensive part of the system and iGaming is another organization that can deal with the certification process for random number generators. Like other companies on this list, they can also assess and certificate those Return to Player percentages.
IGaming go a little further than most as they cover accreditation for the entire gambling sector. That extended service can be seen in live casinos where they will actually carry out an in-house visit to assess the live studio and other key facilities.
Certification can also be seen in sports betting but as far as accreditation for casinos is concerned, iGaming is, perhaps, the most extensive and thorough regulatory service around.
Gambling Portal Webmasters Association (GWPA)
The Gambling Portal Webmasters Association (GWPA) is a body set up to support affiliates within the industry. An affiliate refers customers to an operator with a view to earning commission based on those referrals.
Anyone setting up as an affiliate should strongly consider joining the GWPA as they provide useful support and a network of contacts that can prove extremely useful as they move forward with their business.
The organisation was founded in 2001 and therefore has a lot of history and experience behind them. As they work hard on behalf of their members, they look to build stronger affiliate programmes for them to sign up to.
While the GWPA largely benefits those who work in the gambling industry, they can also benefit individuals. Those who sign up or play with an operator that is a member of the body can do so in confidence knowing that the company is an effective force in the overall sphere of casino compliance.
GDPR for Online Casinos
All established and safe online casinos should be protecting their customers’ sensitive information when they play online. The law pertaining to the issue of safety and security is covered by the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation of 2016.
The aim of the ruling is to provide a unified regulatory framework within the European Union and to make it easier for individual businesses to register and comply with the requirements. In terms of individual users, the mission is to give customers the control over their personal data.
While all operators have to go through a licensing and regulation process, this is perhaps the most important piece of legislation. Those who do not comply with the rules of the GDPR can be subject to huge fines.
Essentially, it requires transparency in terms of how the casino handles the customer’s personal data and how it protects those details from unauthorised third parties. Any operator trading within the EU should fully comply with the law and have a section on their website outlining how that data is handled.
This can usually be found under a section marked as ‘security’ or it could be shown as part of a general ‘about us’ page. If in any doubt, it is recommended that a user gets in touch with customer services.
All online casinos have to go through a rigorous checking process before they can be granted a licence to operate. Having met those requirements, it’s not compulsory for them to partner in with any of the organisations on this list but, in doing so, they add a strong element of trust for their customers.
All of these bodies stand for fair play and integrity and, when customers see the respective logos at their chosen casino, they can have greater peace of mind when they sign up.