Choosing a fully licensed and regulated online casino gives players peace of mind – Image via Pexels
One of the most important things to consider before signing up for an account with an online casino is whether it is licensed and regulated to offer its services in your jurisdiction.
The early days of online casinos were littered with stories of rogue operators failing to pay out winnings, but things are much different today.
Many governments across the world have tightened up licensing and regulation in recent years, thus creating a much safer environment for players.
However, it undoubtedly always pays to be vigilant where money is concerned, so read on as we look at how to choose a safe and regulated online casino.
How online casinos are regulated
The internet is awash with online casinos sites, making it extremely easy for players to sign-up and start playing their favourite games.
Many people make the mistake of opening an account without researching what they are getting into, but it makes sense to spend a little time doing your homework before making a deposit.
This point is particularly pertinent at the moment, with an increasing number of gambling operators launching new casino sites online.
When it comes to regulation, each country has its own process for making sure that online casinos adhere to the gambling laws in their jurisdiction.
For example, if you live in the United States, each region across the country has its own organisation which is responsible for overseeing the gambling industry.
These are generally state-level governmental agencies which have responsibility for ensuring the integrity of the casino gaming industry.
Why is licensing and regulation important?
Licensing and regulatory practices have been vastly improved in recent years to provide players with more protection than was previously the case.
It essentially exists to ensure that gambling operators can be sanctioned if they fail to observe the gambling regulations within a particular jurisdiction.
Playing on a fully licensed online casino reassures players that the site has been fully vetted by the organisation responsible for regulation in their region.
Licensing and regulation covers important elements such as keeping your personal details safe and the implementation of responsible gambling practices.
It also provides protection regarding online payments, giving you peace of mind that your winnings will be paid out if you are lucky enough to make a profit.
Improvements in licensing and regulation have made the online casino sector a much safer place for reputable operators and players alike.
How does an online casino become licensed?
While the process to obtain an online casino license can vary between different jurisdictions, it generally follows a similar pathway.
Operators must undergo stringent checks before being approved, and it is not unusual for this to take three to four months to be completed.
Factors such data security, protection of funds, complaints procedures, responsible gambling and customer support are amongst the elements scrutinised.
Online casinos must agree to their games being tested regularly by independent auditors – Image via Pexels
Fairness and transparency are also placed under the spotlight, particularly with regards to the terms and conditions attached to welcome bonuses and ongoing promotions.
Online casino operators must also agree to their sites being tested regularly by independent organisations to ensure they remain fair.
This covers vital elements such as the game software and the audit of information security management systems.
How do I find out if an online casino is legal?
As we have already mentioned, it is imperative that you assess whether an online casino is fully licensed and regulated before signing up for an account.
This gives you protection if something untoward happens such as your personal details being compromised or not receiving your winnings.
To check whether an online casino holds the appropriate licenses to operate in your jurisdiction, check out the footer on the website or app.
This should contain clear information about their licenses which should include clickable links to view these on the appropriate regulatory organisation’s website.
If you have any doubts about the legitimacy of an online casino, it is advisable to move on to the next one as there is plenty of choice online.
Reading online reviews is another great way to assess whether an operator is legal – players who have been wronged are rarely shy about sharing their misfortune!
Which is the best safe and regulated online casino?
Deciding which online casino is the best is purely subjective. Some may have loads of slots, but have a poor range of table games. Others may be the other way around.
Ultimately you are looking for casino sites with a great range of games, competitive bonuses & promotions, loads of payment options and great customer support.
Well established brands such as 888casino are amongst the operators who can be trusted to deliver a top-class iGaming experience.
They always secure the appropriate licenses, thus ensuring that they adhere to the gambling regulations within the jurisdictions they operate.
While the final decision about which is the best safe and regulated online casino is up to each individual, sticking to recognisable brands is unquestionably a great place to start.
They make it easy for you to check their licensing details, while their online reviews generally paint a positive picture about their levels of trustworthiness.