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 gambling real money South Africa websites have 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:
- A clear ownership and company structure. The idea is to confirm who’s legally accountable for the business. By showing a clear ownership structure, it’s clear who takes responsibility for the company.
- No criminal background. Most authorities will require these checks because a person with a criminal record can’t own an online casino.
- Having sufficient funds. It’s necessary to show that the operator has the necessary funding. Some authorities require guaranteeing player payouts with a certain sum of money.
- Paying relevant fees and submitting applications. The entire application process involves collecting documents and submitting them. A fee is necessary to request a license, regardless of whether you get approved.
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:
- Establishing trust with the players. By getting a license, you show that you comply with laws and regulations. That goes from game fairness to taking everything in the casino’s power to prevent fraud, underage gambling, money laundering, etc.
- Stating that the payouts are guaranteed. A license protects players and ensures the online casino is ready to issue any potential winnings they make.
- Confirming that you will protect player privacy and sensitive information. Implementing the latest security measures is important to prevent potential data breaches.
- Showing you care about responsible gambling. Most authorities require adding responsible gaming features to the site if you want to get a license.
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:
- Encryption standards. The latest SSL certificate and other encryption mechanisms are mandatory for an online casino these days. It’s what prevents hackers and keeps user financial and personal data safe on the platform’s servers. Encrypted transactions have become a standard, too.
- High-quality software. Games from a reputable developer establish trust with the players. For starters, they guarantee that the casino will have many popular games available on the site. Additionally, it shows that the operator is ready to partner with reputable companies to offer the best user experience.
- Audits and fair RNG software. A random number generator is what decides the outcome of casino games. It ensures each player stands an equal and fair chance of winning. The RNG software should work flawlessly. It’s often subject to audits from relevant bodies, and the casino should allow independent auditors to test their RNG. The auditor will issue a certificate that confirms the RNG adheres to fair play.
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 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.
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.
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.
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.
National Gaming Board Sweden
Website: https://www.spelinspektionen.se/en/ Email: [email protected]
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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.
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’ 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:
- SQS Group Limited. They’ve been around since 1996, and their main office is in London.
- Trisigma. This company not only audits casino software, but they make games, too.
- SIQ. This operator reviews table games, slots, and lotteries. Operators can get a certificate that confirms the software is fair.
- QUINEL. The company has multiple offices in Europe and a branch in South Africa.
- Eclipse Compliance Testing. ECT is a US-based testing facility, which mostly does business in North America.
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!
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.