Explore how online gambling is regulated and why it is vital to players. We also dive into online casino jurisdictions and the future of online gambling regulation.
How Online Gambling is Regulated and Protected
Most gamblers don’t have a clue how online gambling is regulated and it’s one characteristic that requires a great deal of attention, especially if you are an avid gambler who enjoys placing bets online. The online gaming industry is still relatively new, enjoying an incredible rise in popularity over the years that no one anticipated. Due to this, countries took a while before passing out legislation to deal with online gambling. Before this, they simply relied on outdated and irrelevant laws that are still used to this very day in some regions.
The regulatory and legal environment of online gambling has greatly improved over the years. However, there is still a long way to go before it can function like a well-regulated industry on a global scale. The convenience of playing from home is one of the primary reasons why online gaming is better than land-based casinos but if it’s not properly regulated, it will quickly lose its appeal. With that in mind, let’s take a look at what online gambling regulation actually is and dive into some of the best regulators in the industry and the features that make them vital to your online gaming experience.
What is Online Gambling Regulation?
Online gambling is like sending money to a faceless entity in return for entertainment. Millions of people across the globe deposit money at gambling sites without ever thinking of the people or companies that are running the show behind the scenes. Players should feel comfortable making transactions in a safe and secure environment with reputable organizations and this is where regulation comes into play. Online gambling regulation has four primary functions:
- To ensure gambling sites operate lawfully.
- To ensure gambling sites operate ethically.
- To ensure players are treated with fairness.
- To ensure players are safe at all times
It goes without saying that all gambling sites need to be compliant with any and all laws that they are subject to. Each of them should engage in ethical practices. For example, there should be strict measures against underage gambling and money laundering, while advertising should never be misleading or dishonest. Players should also be entitled to receive any winnings in a timely manner.
Gambling sites should protect all transactions and be transparent when it comes to the terms and conditions. All the games offered by a gambling site should also provide a fair chance of winning. For instance, the games at Casumo Casino are fun but if there was no fairness towards online players, the gambling site wouldn’t be as popular as it is today.
If all operators adhered to this criteria, the online gambling market would be a safer environment. Unfortunately, it isn’t, and that is exactly why regulation is so vital to the industry. Gambling sites should be focused to adhering to these criteria and shouldn’t be allowed to operate if they are not. However, it’s nearly impossible to stop rogue sites because there is no regulatory body on a global scale that oversees gambling sites in every country.
Thankfully, rogue sites are far and few between and the majority of are situated in countries where they need to adhere to certain laws and regulations. With that in mind, let’s dive into some of the best online gambling jurisdictions and discuss how each of them can help you to have a better online gaming experience.
The Best Online Gambling Jurisdictions
The understand how regulation works in the online gambling industry, you will need to know more about gambling jurisdictions. There are several regions around the world where the government have passed laws, making it completely legal for companies to provide their services and products to online players. Therefore, these companies can operate gambling sites in a completely legal environment.
There are an assortment of online gambling jurisdictions across the globe. Some are highly respected, and most of the best and biggest brands are situated in those places, while others need to be avoided at all costs. Here is a list of the best online gambling jurisdictions in the world:
- Alderney Gambling Control Commission: Established in 2000, the commission is responsible for regulating and licensing some of the most renowned brands in online gaming. It forms part of the UK Gambling Commission whitelist and can advertise across the United Kingdom.
- Malta Gaming Authority: Established in 2004, the gaming authority is immensely popular in Europe and is a full EU member. Malta was the first EU state to regulate online gambling and is considered one of the safest licensing authorities online due to its strict standards.
- Antigua and Barbuda Directorate of Offshore Gaming: The country has been regulating online gambling and issuing licenses since 1994. At first, the licensing entity dished out licenses to any operator that met their minimum standards, causing low-quality gambling sites to display the Antigua seal while scamming players at the same time. Fortunately, the regulatory standards were tightened in recent years and it is now part of the UK Gambling Commission whitelist.
- Panama Gaming Control Board:Established in 2002, Panama is considered one of the smaller licensing jurisdictions when it comes to online gambling. However, the country does have a handful of recognizable brands under its name. It’s an extremely attractive destination to launch a gambling site thanks to a gambling-friendly banking industry and minimal government interference. The country’s infrastructure is also well maintained and modern.
- Curacao Gaming Control Board: Curacao is regarded as one of the oldest online gambling regulators in the world and is, therefore, a renowned e-gaming regulator. Most gambling sites choose Curacao due to its favorable tax laws and the licensing procedure that is relatively inexpensive and quick.
- Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission: Established in 2001, this licensing authority holds a lot of weight when it comes to legitimacy and safety. Gambling sites with a license from the Isle of Man can also advertise in the UK as it forms part of the UK Gambling Commission whitelist.
- UK Gambling Commission: Established in 2005, the UK Gambling Commission is regarded as one of the most prestigious regulatory bodies that ensures safety and fairness to players above all else. If you want to provide your products and services to players in the United Kingdom, you will only be allowed to do so with a license issued by the UK Gambling Commission.
The licensing requirements for a gambling site will greatly depend on where the company is based and the services that are offered to players. However, most requirements for a license include suitability for executives and owners, handling complaints, preventing underage gambling, dealing with problem gamblers, fairness on games, and proper accounting procedures.
Even though technology continues to change the gambling industry , the regulatory bodies mentioned above will always ensure that you play in a safe and fair environment where you can feel comfortable making real money transactions.
The Future of Regulating Online Gambling
It’s impossible to predict how online gambling regulation will take shape in the next couple of years. A perfect solution would include a new organization that will be responsible for governing the online gambling industry on a global scale. This will obviously remove difficulties in determining which gambling sites meet the needed requirements to be deemed trustworthy. If all gambling sites adhere to the same rules, things will be a lot easier for everyone. However, this is highly unlikely as there are too many variables at play.
You can expect to see several countries refine their existing legislation, while others will pass new laws to specifically deal with regulation when it comes to online gambling. There is still a lot of countries that continue to rely on confusing and outdated laws that are not relevant to the online gaming industry. It would be wonderful if all regulation is focused on player protection where casinos are regulated and licensed by their own jurisdictions.
A perfect example is Canada where every casino is regulated by the province. This concept has worked so well for the Great White North that Alberta revealed a new provincially regulated gaming site that aims to make over $3.7 million in revenue during its first year. The revenue will then be injected back into the community to further enrich the lifestyle in the province. It worked like a charm in Ontario and British Columbia, so there is no doubt that the new provincially owned casino in Alberta will muster the same results.