UK Gambling Commission
The UK Gambling Commission is responsible for issuing licenses to online casino operators to allow them to accept players from Great Britain and Northern Ireland.
With the UK Gambling Commission coming under the Ministerial Auspices of the Department of Culture, Media and Sport.
Since 2014, any online casino that wishes to accept players from the UK has to have a license from the UKGC.
All UKGC Licensees have had to assess themselves against three categories of protection for customer funds: basic, medium and high.
Licensed operators, both remote and non-remote, are required to clearly convey their Level of Protection Rating to customers as part of their terms and conditions.
Any and all online casinos which have a UKGC License offer a further level of protection and regulation for players and a real recourse should a problem with a casino occur.
Established as a result of the UK Gambling Act 2005, the UK Gambling Commission assumed full powers in 2007, taking over the role of the former Gaming Board for Great Britain.
Since October 2013, the UK Gambling Commission has also taken over the function of overseeing the UK National Lottery, replacing the National Lottery Commission.
The UKGC as it is often known as, has an important role to play in monitoring and regulating those casinos which accept UK players. However, players please be aware, there are many many operators out there on the internet, that readily take UK players, who have not been awarded or have applied for a UKGC license.
All the online casinos which are reviewed here on CasinoRankings.com which accept UK Residents as players, have an appropriate UKGC license, in addition to their offshore license where they operate from, if applicable.
Player Protection and the UKGC’s Role
So what protections if any are players afforded by the UK Gambling Commission when playing at those casinos which have a current and valid UKGC license?
Well the stated aim of the UKGC is as follows: “to keep crime out of gambling, to ensure that gambling is conducted fairly and openly, and to protect children and vulnerable people“
To this end, all operators who have a UKGC license also have to meet and adhere to laid down Responsible Gambling criteria set by the commission. One such notable change is the implementation of the ‘Take a Break’ facility, or TAB as it is sometimes known as.
TAB or Take a Break allows players to basically ‘self exclude’ themselves from an online casino for a limited amount of time. In most instances, this can be done automatically and straight away within the casino software – whether it is a download client or via a web browser no download casino.
Furthermore the UKGC continually monitors and oversees it’s licensees and can and do visit any operator with a license, to undertake financial and regulatory audits.
Finally, the UKGC also appoint Alternative Dispute Resolution Services for players to use and go to, should a dispute arise between them and a UKGC licensed online casino. One such service is the one provided by eCOGRA.
For UK players, playing at an online casino licensed and regulated by the UK Gambling Commission is a big plus.