When online gambling first began, the industry was unregulated. In an attempt to make the industry legitimate, online gaming commissions were created. A lot of these commissions were first seen in the island nations including Kahnawake, the Isle of Man, Gibraltar, Curacao, Alderney and Malta. These nations are currently still a part of the regulations for online casinos. As time passed, the laws and regulations regarding online gambling were recognized by the major economic powers. This led to many changes in the way the United Kingdom handles online gaming.
UK Online Casinos Contribute to a Top Market
The online gambling market in the United Kingdom has become one of the biggest in the world. This makes the current climate extremely profitable and desirable for remote service providers. Becoming a part of this market is very challenging due to the rigidness of the internal regulations. These rules must be strictly adhered to for legal operation and the promotion of services within the United Kingdom. The gambling industry statistics reveal that 33 percent of the GGR or gross gaming revenue for the United Kingdom is generated by online casinos.
An additional 35.1 percent is supplied by remote betting. The remainder is from pool betting, betting exchanges and bingo. Online gaming platforms sustain 22.87 million player accounts and new registrations have reached 24.65 million. These accounts provided the remote operators with £607.04 million in funds.
Who Runs the Show?
The UKGC or the UK Gambling Commission regulates all online gambling services provided to the United Kingdom. As of November 1st of 2014, every online casino is required to have a remote license issued by the UKGC. This license is necessary for promotion within the United Kingdom and the acceptance of United Kingdom players. Obtaining a remote license is critical for cooperation from the providers of the game content such as NetEnt and Microgaming. They will not provide their games to operators in the United Kingdom unless they are officially licensed.
An application must be submitted to the UK Gambling Commission to procure a remote gaming license in the United Kingdom. Supporting documents are required. The casino must meet the security requirements and technical standards of the UKGC. It usually requires sixteen weeks to receive a license from the time the application was submitted. The application process is much faster and easier when a local attorney is consulted. It is important to note a license from the UKGC only permits gambling operations in the UK and no other jurisdictions.
Casino Licensing Online is Tough
The UKGC is exceptionally rigid regarding security standards and technical parameters regarding any casino submitting an application to be licensed. This information encompasses player accounts, certified RNG, setting money limits, financial transactions, responsible gambling information, game rules, a clear definition of game results, time-critical events, the probability of winning, reality checks, auto-play functionality, the potential of interrupted gambling and time limits. The platform used for the online casino must meet every UKGC requirement including the software provider. These standards must be fully understood and the platform must be adapted to be approved for a remote license application from the UKGC.
The majority of players in the United Kingdom have a preference for slots followed by table games and finally card games. The developers of the game content do not have preferences in regards to competing for the attention of the players. The players prefer games of high quality, excellent design and famous providers. The larger the selection of games offered by the casino, the higher their chances for success.
The currency accepted for the United Kingdom market should be GBP. The majority of players in the United Kingdom prefer conducting financial transactions with credit cards. Additional methods for payment are highly recommended and include bank transfers, Neteller and Skrill. Bitcoin has been officially recognized by the UKGC as an alternative payment option. The online casinos accepting Bitcoin have an advantage over the competition.
A lot of countries place a limit or prohibit online gaming advertisements. The United Kingdom does not follow suit and allows advertising on television, the radio, the internet and in print media. The casino must have an official license from the UKGC to advertise. There is legal work and specific preparations necessary to launch an online casino in the United Kingdom. The opportunity has exceptional potential. The market is attractive and often requires only the right partners.
The Gaming Act of 2005 established the UKGC. This was an important step because it enabled one regulator to combine all gaming within the United Kingdom. This includes casinos, online poker, keno, bingo and sports betting. A tax based on internet gaming was created by the UKGC but a loophole was present. The only companies requiring a license were based out of the United Kingdom. This enabled offshore companies to create tax havens and evade taxes.
The regulators in the United Kingdom lacked the jurisdiction necessary to resolve player disputes. This led to the licensing policies of the UKGC being revisited. It is now required for any organization operating within the United Kingdom to have a license from the UKGC. All gambling profits are taxed fifteen percent. This is called a point of consumption tax. The UKCG also has the jurisdiction to resolve any gaming disputes.
Powers of the UKGC
The UKGC has three primary functions outlined in the 2005 Gambling Act. They are responsible for ensuring all gambling is fair, safe and protects vulnerable adults and children. All potential and existing licenses are evaluated to ensure they are run efficiently and safety. The UKGC has provided players with a safe environment for gambling. All foreigners without a license from the UKGC are forbidden to advertise in the United Kingdom. This is called a whitelist and was a part of the 2005 Gambling Act.
Specific jurisdictions have licensing requirements strict enough to be allowed to take wagers from United Kingdom customers. The whitelist is effective but has been controversial during the past. Some gaming operators within the United Kingdom have received a betting license from the UKGC to ensure they can continue accepting action in Britain. This includes numerous operators with a retail presence within the United Kingdom and operators with an exclusive internet presence.