Overview of Regulators and Licensing

When you visit an online bingo site for the first time, you may be tempted to think that every site is designed to take your money and there are no laws surrounding the industry. Well, this couldn’t be further from the truth. In fact, online gambling has incredibly strict laws and regulations, meaning that if you know what to look out for on a site, you can be sure you’re signing up with a highly reputable site which will look after you well.

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Every reputable site must follow two key rules – it must be licensed by a trustworthy authority, and regulated by a third party. With a license, an online bingo site can prove it provides fair games and all customer finances are stored both safely and securely. This is because it has provided this information to the authority it is licensed with. Additionally, undergoing continual regulation from a third party body means there are no bad practices associated with the site, and there is always a place to contact if you have an issue with the site itself.

To find out if a site is correctly licensed and regulated, go to the bottom of the homepage, where you should find a logo displayed on the screen. It shouldn’t be hard to find it, and if it is, then this should be a red flag. If you can’t find such a logo, don’t sign up with the site, as it may not be operating legally. Beyond the logo, you should check out the details of the license and follow the link to the website of the relevant authority. Alternatively, read one of our reviews here on Queen Bingo to see where its license is located. Here are the names of the major licensing bodies to look out for on a bingo site before signing up for an account with one:

UK Gambling Commission

If an online bingo site intends to operate legally in the UK, it must have a UK Gambling Commission certificate. If the operator has any UK players without having such a certificate, it is automatically breaking the law. It’s therefore important to check that a site has this licensure if you reside in this location. The UKGC is one of the most respected regulatory bodies in the world, and its main role is to ensure that gambling operators are practicing both fair and ethical policies.

Malta Gaming Authority

Despite its size, a certificate from this small country carries a lot of respect, as the Malta Gaming Authority is the second biggest regulatory body in the world. They operate a stringent watch over the operators who are licensed with them, and they have a good reputation. It’s unlikely you will need to contact this authority in relation to a site which carries its certificate, but if you do, you can be sure of top quality service.

Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission

This licensing body has been established since the 1960s, meaning that its reputation precedes it as a solid place to obtain a gambling license certificate. Taxes are low with this commission, but that doesn’t mean its rules are of a low quality. In fact, those registered with the Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission will encounter one of the strictest sets of rules available, so customers can play with complete confidence if this logo is on their bingo site of choice.

Curacao Internet Gambling Association

Companies are attracted to this organisation due to its low tax levels, but a license from this body doesn’t carry as much weight as those gained from others, as there aren’t as many checks carried out on it. If you are positive you want to sign up for a bingo site with this certificate displayed on its homepage, you are doing so at your own risk to a certain extent, as the risks may be slightly higher than you would find with organisations such as the UKGC. We will always detail whether a site is licensed with Curacao on our bingo reviews.

Government of Gibraltar

Despite being a small UK territory, a license from the Government of Gibraltar packs a punch, as there are some incredibly strict rules associated with this certificate. Many major online bingo sites are registered to this organisation, but it’s worth bearing in mind that, despite being a UK territory, a license from this body doesn’t make it legal for UK players to sign up for an account on bingo sites bearing its logo. That being said, this could change, as the Gibraltar Betting and Gaming Association is challenging the rule.

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