Establishing and running some businesses requires getting a license from relevant industry bodies. It’s no different with online casinos. Before launching an internet gaming site, an operator needs to acquire a casino license.

Licenses are mandatory for both online and offline gambling platforms. In this article, we’ll focus on web-based operators. The guide covers everything from online casino license basics to various governing bodies issuing it. Here’s what every player should know about these certificates!

What Is a Casino License?

A casino license is an official document that confirms a gambling operator is legit and runs a transparent business. Relevant industry and government-approved authorities issue these licenses, which makes them reputable. This certificate confirms that the web casino complies with relevant laws and industry standards. All the best online real money gambling sites South Africa has to offer have at least a single valid license from a reputable industry body.

You’ll find information about the online gambling license held by a particular casino on its homepage. The data is usually in the footer, and the operator should provide the basic info and a link to the complete licensing document published on the authority’s website. Most operators are proud of their online casino licenses, which is why they portray the logo of the governing body that issued it on their site.

Requirements to Get a Casino License

Let’s observe things from the perspective of an internet casino. How can platform administrators sign up for relevant online gambling licenses? The first step is to analyze the requirements of the gaming authority. Once they fulfil those conditions, they can submit an application and hope they’ll receive the license.

Here are the usual requirements for a casino license:

Licensing bodies only issue temporary licenses, so online casinos need to renew them regularly. Most authorities require renewing licenses on a yearly basis. That means collecting and submitting relevant documentation and confirming the platform has done a legit business in the meantime.

Reasons Why Online Casinos Should Get Gambling Licenses

Potential casino owners might think that getting a gaming license is a hassle that doesn’t come with many benefits. However, there are important reasons why online casinos should get a gambling license. These include:

What Factors Make an Online Casino Secure?

You encountered licensed casinos online, but is that enough to guarantee they are a secure place to gamble? The truth is that it all starts with a gaming license. It shows the online casino complies with relevant laws in the specified jurisdiction.

But apart from the casino license, here are some other aspects that contribute to the online gaming operator security:

Gambling Industry Regulators

The global gaming market is well-regulated overall. A casino can choose between a Maltese License, Gibraltar license, UK license, etc. Here is an overview of the top-rated regulators per continent!

Africa

Africa is the least developed continent when it comes to reputable gambling bodies. Some countries have bodies that regulate online gaming at a national level. There are no reputable authorities for issuing licenses that would be accepted continent-wide.

National Lottery Regulatory Commission – Nigeria

Website: https://nlrc-gov.ng/          Email: [email protected]

NLRC regulates offline and online gaming in Nigeria. It issues sports betting permits, as well as online and mobile interactive gaming licenses. This is a national body, which means that providers who acquire NLRC licenses can legally offer services in this country.

Pros
It regulates various gaming aspects from gambling to sports betting
A national body, which means a license allows you to operate in the entire country
Cons
It doesn’t have an impressive worldwide reputation

Gauteng Gambling Board

Website: https://www.ggb.org.za/          Email: [email protected]

Gauteng is a province in SA, and its gaming board regulates offline gambling properties in this region. Since online gambling is illegal in SA and operators can’t offer their services over the web, GGB can only issue offline licenses. South Africa also has a National Gambling Board, which aims to promote responsible gambling.

Pros
A reputable body with a long tradition
The official website posts regular updates
Cons
It only issues offline gambling licenses

Europe

Malta Gaming Authority

Website: https://www.mga.org.mt/          Email: [email protected]

Malta Gaming Authority was launched in 2001. Today, it has over 20 years of tradition and a huge reputation in the industry. It complies with relevant EU laws, making it the right license for providers who want to do business in the European Union. The company monitors the market and doesn’t hesitate to ban or blacklist unlicensed casinos.

Pros
A reliable regulatory body
More than two decades of tradition
Cons
Not that easy to get the license

Gibraltar Regulatory Authority

Website: http://gbga.gi/          Email: [email protected]

Gibraltar Regulatory Authority serves to issue licenses and monitor the overall gaming market. That includes licensing providers that offer sports betting, casino games, etc. Similar to the Malta license, GRA complies with EU laws and regulations.

Pros
Complies with European laws
It monitors sports betting and online casino providers
Cons
Not as popular as the Malta Gaming Authority

National Gaming Board Sweden

Website: https://www.spelinspektionen.se/en/          Email: [email protected]linspektionen.se

Scandinavian gaming boards are becoming increasingly popular. Many decide to acquire these certificates rather than going for a Gibraltar license. Swedish Spielinspektionen is famous for its strict approval process. Their certificate is valid for Sweden, but its reputability exceeds the country’s borders.

Pros
A strict verification process
Secure license
Cons
Fees are high for the providers

Spillemyindigheden Denmark

Website: https://www.spillemyndigheden.dk/en          Email: [email protected]

Although it was launched in 2000, this governing body doesn’t have a huge reputation outside Denmark and Scandinavia. Its idea is to regulate the casino market in this country. The authority works closely with the Ministry of Taxation and ensures only legally licensed businesses offer casino services in this country.

Pros
More than two decades of tradition
Not too harsh on the requirements for the casinos
Cons
It could have a bigger reputation outside its borders

United Kingdom

Alderney Gambling Control Commission

Website: https://www.gamblingcontrol.org/          Email: [email protected]

This body regulates the market in the States of Alderney. Their primary task is to issue and renew licenses for trusted providers. The laws followed by the AGCC are quite strict, which is why this body has been popular in the industry.

Pros
More than 20 years of tradition
A high standard maintained
Cons
Not easy to acquire the license

United Kingdom Gambling Commission

Website: https://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/          Email: [email protected]

UKGC might be the most prestigious license to get in the entire industry. Its main purpose is to allow online casinos to do business in the UK. But if a casino complies with those laws, that should be proof enough you can play on that site from any country.

Pros
The most reputable body in the industry
Its license shows huge trustworthiness of the casino
Cons
Not in charge of sports betting

Asia

Casino Regulatory Authority of Singapore

Website: https://www.cra.gov.sg/          Contact: https://www.cra.gov.sg/contact

Singapore established its regulatory body in 2008. The main purpose was to ensure gambling in this country became more secure, and the authorities reached that goal. CRA focuses on ensuring the operators meet financial requirements but also prevents underage gambling, fraud, and other potential issues.

Pros
A reputable licensing body in the region
Fairly strict conditions to meet
Cons
Doesn’t have much influence outside the region

Macau Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau

Website: https://www.dicj.gov.mo/web/en/information/index.html          Email: [email protected]

This body was established in 2003, and it mainly serves offline facilities in Macau. The bureau makes sure the gaming companies comply with local regulations. That’s important since Macau is one of the most famous world gambling destinations.

Pros
It issues licenses to all operators who offer games in this area
A reputable body in Macau
Cons
Fees can be high

North America

Kahnawake Gaming Commission

Website: https://www.gamingcommission.ca/home_i.htm          Email: [email protected]

The Kahnawake Gaming Commission is the most prestigious in Canada. It issued licenses to over 50 operators and 200 sites. KGC was founded in 1996 after the local provinces acquired the right to regulate online gaming on their territories as they saw fit.

Pros
Good conditions for online casinos
A fairly long tradition
Cons
It’s only valid at a limited territory

Curacao eGaming Authority

Website: https://www.gamingcontrolcuracao.org/          Email: [email protected]

This small island in the Caribbean is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The license issued by Curacao eGaming has become popular because it’s relatively easy to obtain. The fees are also fairly affordable, which is why many new casinos decide to acquire this license.

Pros
Attractive fees for new casinos
Not hard to obtain the license
Cons
It doesn’t have the same reputation as UKGC or MGA

Australia

Victorian Commission for Gambling Regulation

Website: https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/          Contact: https://www.vcglr.vic.gov.au/contact-us

It only started in 2012, and this body focuses on regulating the market in Victoria, Australia. VCGLR issues licenses and verifies the operator’s compliance with relevant rules and regulations. It has a strict verification process and harsh fees.

Pros
A reputable body in this state
It has been around for a decade
Cons
The fees for the operators can be high

Queensland Office of Gaming Regulation

Website: https://www.justice.qld.gov.au/about-us/services/liquor-gaming       Email: [email protected]

Queensland Commission established this branch to issue licenses to operators who want to offer casino games to players in this region. The licenses are temporary, which means providers need to renew them regularly. This authority ensures the casinos meet any relevant local regulations.

Pros
Renewable licenses with a strict monitoring process
A reputable body in this area
Cons
Local laws aren’t easy to comply with for new casinos

Having Multiple Gambling Licenses

It’s not uncommon for online casinos to acquire certificates from multiple licensing online casino operators. The reason behind this is the expansion to specific markets. For example, a casino might hold a license from a national board in Scandinavia.

But if they want to expand to South Africa, they could use another licensing body to boost their reputation. That’s why they acquired a license from the Curacao Gaming Authority, too. Great Britain is specific about allowing online casinos to do business on its territory. That’s why platforms that want to operate on their territory need to acquire a specific UK license from the local Gambling Commission.

Gaming Auditors and Testing Bodies Worldwide

Apart from a gaming license, acquiring a confirmation that casino software is fair has become prestigious in the online gambling industry. Many internet casinos consult independent auditors and ask them to conduct detailed testing of their software. The goal is to confirm RNG is fair, and all players can expect equal treatment and chances of winning. Here is the basic info about the most reputable testing bodies and auditors in the industry.

eCOGRA

It stands for eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance. The company launched in 2003, and its certificate has become the most reputable in the industry. An eCOGRA logo on a casino site is a confirmation all games are fair. The company conducts detailed testing and even offers extensive reports to casino operators once they finish.

Gaming Labs International

Gaming Labs International (GLI) has offices in multiple regions. The company was established in 1987 with the idea to offer testing services to the internet gambling industry. Today, GLI has offices in Europe, Australia, and the UK. They test both games and RNG, but also overall platform security and features.

BMM

BMM has over four decades of tradition since its first office was established in 1981. The company started in Australia, but they now have offices throughout the world. That includes Macao, Singapore, Las Vegas, and even South Africa. This auditor is among the rare ones with an office on the African continent.

iTech Labs

This testing laboratory was established in 2004, but it didn’t take long for it to become a prestigious industry brand. iTech Labs is particularly popular among poker websites, but they also test online casinos. Their certificate is a confirmation of the operator’s integrity and accountability.

Gaming Associates

Gaming Associates’ roots go back to 1990. Ever since the first day, the company has been focused on offering consultation services to online casinos and testing its software. GA has experience with casinos but also lottery and sports betting providers.

Other Auditors Worth Mentioning

Here are some other institutions that test and audit casinos and issue certificates:

What Is the Best Casino License for South Africans?

South African laws put online gambling in grey areas. It’s not technically legal, which means domestic operators can’t offer online casino games. However, players can still access platforms based abroad and enjoy spending time in web casinos.

As for the best license, you should stick to those issued by reputable governing bodies. For example, you’ll find many casinos that obtained a license from the Curacao Gaming Authority. The United Kingdom, Malta, Gibraltar, and even Kahnawake Gaming Commission are also among regulatory bodies worth mentioning. It’s imperative to check if the license is valid since these certificates are renewable.

Secure Online Gambling in South Africa

It’s possible to gamble online in South Africa and stay secure. However, you’ll need to pick licensed online casinos. This guide offers all details about different licenses, and these certificates are important. You can stick to our recommendations as we aim to mention only trustworthy casinos on our website.

Once you pick the desired casino and open its site, head to the footer section. You’ll find information about the licensing body for that casino. The platform will show logo or textual info, as well as a link to the license. You can use that link to check if the license is valid on the regulator’s site. Once you confirm, don’t hesitate to play and enjoy your favourite games in that casino!

Leah Shepherd
Chief Editor

Hello everyone!

I’m Leah and I’m a newbie here. I joined the team in July 2020 as a second editor of CasinoHEX.co.za. I’m glad to work with such passionate and highly skilled professionals as my colleagues.

For more than 3 years, I was interested in growing the worldwide gambling industry, searched for news, and tested live and online casinos by myself. I was inspired by fantastic stories of huge jackpots winners. But once I found out that not always games are fair. So I’ve decided to change it.

Now I review licensed online casinos and slots on the South African market to provide the readers with juicy and rich bonuses, the newest promotions, and other useful information to help them make the right choice and enjoy safe and joyful gambling.

FAQ about Online Gambling Licences

How to Choose a Licensed Online Casino?

Our experts put great effort into selecting reputable online casinos and listing them on our site. Whether you are looking for mobile casinos or platforms offering games by particular providers, you’ll find recommendations on our website. If you want to confirm the casino you picked is licensed, check the relevant information in the footer section of their homepage.

What Is the Best Gambling License?

The most reputable gambling licenses include the United Kingdom Gambling Commission, Malta Gaming Authority, Curacao Gaming License, etc. Online gambling licenses are temporary, so confirm that your preferred internet casino has a valid certificate before you start playing.

Does the License Have Any Impact on My Winnings?

The license doesn’t affect the rules of the game or the winning amounts. However, it serves as a guarantee that your winnings will be paid out. It shows the online casino runs a legit business and is liquid enough to release any winnings. That’s why it’s important to find an operator with a valid gaming license.

What If a Casino Has Several Gambling Licenses?

Some casinos will acquire multiple gaming licenses. It’s usually for the purpose of expanding to other markets and establishing trust with local players. The general rule is that additional licenses only add to the casino’s reputation.

#StandWithUkraine

#StandWithUkraine - We stand with people of Ukraine. Russia is not “just” attacking the Ukraine people.
This is a war against democratic values, human rights and peace. We can make impact and help with our donations.

Donate Option 1 Donate Option 2