What is UK Gambling Commission?
The UK Gambling Commission was established in 2007 under the Gambling Act 2005. It is the principal authority regulating individuals and businesses that provide gambling services in Britain. Financed by licensing fees and levy payments from the National Lottery, the UKGC has quickly established itself as one of the best gambling regulatory organisations globally.
The UKGC is officially tasked with ensuring fair gambling practices at arcades, online casinos, sportsbooks, slots, bingo, gaming software providers, etc. The UK Gambling Commission also teams up with several other gambling regulators so that they can keep gambling institutions crime-free. Additionally, UKGC is responsible for preventing gambling-related exploitation, which it does by spreading awareness and assisting players.
Main Role Of UKGC & Major Practices Of UKGC
The UK Gambling Commission primarily sets out to achieve the following goals:
- Prevent gambling from being a primary source of crime or gambling-related disorders. Furthermore, it also looks to prevent gambling from supporting or being associated with crime.
- Ensure that all kinds of gambling are conducted fairly and transparently.
- Prevent minors from being affected by and associated with gambling.
The UK Gambling Commission aims to fulfil these goals mentioned above by:
- Ensuring all UK-based gambling services require the UKGC licence to operate in Britain.
- All online casinos must have clear terms and conditions related to every promotion.
- Casinos must have random number generators for all kinds of online casino games.
- Casinos must not misrepresent their promotions and bonus offers.
- All online casinos must allow players to set limits and budgets related to finances.
- Players must also have the ability to exclude themselves from gambling.
- All online casinos must provide responsible gambling options to players.
- Work closely with other gambling regulators to raise standards.
- Enforce action and prosecution if a casino violates licence conditions.
Financial Safety & Security At UKGC Casinos
Online casinos primarily require real-money transactions for players to enjoy the different services provided by them fully. Hence, online casinos use different payment options for monetary transactions, which require players to divulge their personal information.
UKGC-licensed casinos have to protect this personal data related to different customers. UKGC-certified casinos generally have HTTPS and Transport Layer Security (TLS) at their casinos. Furthermore, these casinos also have SSL encryption technology, which protects the sensitive data of the visiting players from prying eyes.
Fair Games At UKGC Licensed Casinos
Most online casino games from different software providers are based on the Random Number Generator (RNG) mechanic. Hence, online casinos need to make sure that this RNG option is not rigged in any way.
Games at UKGC licence casinos undergo rigorous testing from top industry auditors like eCOGRA, iTech Labs, etc. These quality check procedures guarantee UK players a fair gambling experience at these online casinos.
Clear & Complete Bonus Terms
Promotions and bonuses are an important aspect of online casinos; in some respects, they are the chief form of advertisement for these casinos. A quick look around the internet will present players with thousands of enticing casino promotions. These promotion options include welcome bonuses, no deposit bonuses, free spins bonuses, weekly rewards, loyalty bonuses, etc.
Unregulated online casinos might use these promotion options to attract UK players and not provide the exact bonus features previously advertised. This is why the UKGC requires all its licenced casinos to provide clear terms and conditions related to their promotions. This helps prevent unlawful fund deductions from player accounts. Furthermore, players can read the terms and conditions related to the different promotions offered by online casinos and get the complete picture before accepting the bonus.
Responsible Gambling at UKGC Licensed Casinos
At the centre of it all, UKGC mainly aims to provide responsible gambling options to UK players. This means protecting gambling addicts who can be helped to overcome gambling addiction, and people who are not financially adept are kept away from gambling websites.
Another aspect that the UK Gambling Commission looks into is the prevention of underage gambling. This is mainly done by obtaining proper Know Your Customer (KYC) details for all online casino players. Furthermore, UKGC has also collaborated with other responsible gambling-related organisations in the UK and other parts of the world. Some of which have been listed below.
- BeGambleAware: BeGambleAware is a charity organisation established by GambleAware to help people suffering from gambling addiction. It closely works with victims of gambling addiction by providing them with proper advice and support. It also screens potential people who might be vulnerable to gambling addiction. BeGambleAware keeps the victims’ identities hidden and has options for people to report friends and family who might be suffering from this problem.
- GAMSTOP: GAMSTOP is a wonderful self-exclusion programme that allows people to exclude themselves from gambling for a selected duration. This can be done by registering with GAMSTOP, which takes a few minutes. You need to provide basic information to this organisation. Once the verification process is completed, GAMSTOP will prevent you from accessing any gambling-related website or app in the UK. It is important to note that this organisation only works in the UK, and only British players can register with GAMSTOP.
- GamCare: GamCare is another organisation focused on helping people overcome gambling addiction. People struggling with gambling addiction can visit GamCare for support, advice, and vital information. This UK-based organisation has a 24/7 helpline, chat rooms, and forums for people to connect with. GamCare advisors are highly trained individuals who ensure gambling addiction victims receive the best help they require.
How Are UKGC Licensed Casinos Selected & Rated?
Now that we have discussed all the aspects related to the UK Gambling Commission and how it helps safeguard the interests of British players, Here are the things we look into when we rate and suggest different online casinos licenced by the UKGC:
- Safety and Security
- The best online casinos have fair games with multiple checks from auditor groups like eCOGRA and iTech Labs. Highly rated UKGC-licensed casinos must offer swift transaction options to players without any added fees. Banking sections at these casinos must provide various deposit and withdrawal options that suit all kinds of casino players.
- Fees and Limits
- Highly rated UKGC-licensed casinos must offer generous fees and limits related to deposits and withdrawals. Players should also be allowed to withdraw quickly without looking for annoying limits.
- Bonuses and Promotions
- The best UKGC casinos must have a wide range of promotion options like a welcome bonus, a no deposit bonus, free spins, and a working loyalty system. Players must also be able to read about the terms and conditions of these promotions, which must not be too difficult to fulfil.
- Game Variety
- The best UKGC-licensed casinos have a wide range of different casino games on offer, including a selection of different slot games, classic table games, game shows, and live dealer games. Sportsbook enthusiasts must have the option to choose from both live sports and virtual sports events.
- Customer Support
- The best UKGC casinos must have several customer support options, like live chat, email support, or phone numbers. Additionally, these casinos must have the best customer service executives ready to assist casino players with their queries and problems.
UKGC Licensed Casinos: Pros & Cons
Let us look at the advantages and disadvantages of casinos with the UKGC licence.
|UKGC-licensed casinos have fair games from reputable providers.||There is no way to determine whether the games are fair.|
|The bonus options on offer have simple terms which are easy to obtain.||The bonus terms might have hidden terms.|
|UKGC ensures players’ interests are looked after.||Non-UKGC casinos might not cater to the interests of the players.|
|Presence of responsible gambling options||Responsible gambling options may or may not be available.|
UKGC plays an important role in the UK gambling industry. It regulates online casinos and looks out for the players’ interests. British casino enthusiasts must always check for the UKGC licence the next time they are looking for an online casino.