EU Group Proposes Stricter Remote Gaming Rules

Bingo players in the UK and the European Union enjoy protections that American players do not. Thanks to the passage of the ill advised UIGEA American players have been left at the mercy of offshore online gaming operators and payment processors who may or may not be honest. At the beginning of March 2011 the European Committee for Standardisation (CEN) a workshop agreement titled “Responsible Remote Gambling Measures” which will increase the level of protections enjoyed by European internet bingo players.  In the UK online bingo sites operating and advertising in the country must either be licensed by the UK Gambling Commission or be on a ‘white list’ of approved licensing jurisdictions. Examples of approved jurisdictions include Alderny, Gibraltar and Malta.

The CEN Workshop Agreements (CWAs) are voluntary and are drawn up using a transparent process. The new agreement is limited to online gaming and is the result of 600 contributions by participants and a 3 month public consultation. The workshop agreement on Responsible Remote Gambling Measures includes several measures to implement further protections for online gamblers in the EU. The agreement covers nine basic areas which are;

The prevention of underage gambling
The protection of vulnerable players
Secure, safe and reliable operating environment
Commitment to customer satisfaction and support
Responsible marketing and advertising
Fair gaming
Prompt and accurate customer payments
Protection of customer privacy and safeguarding of information
Combating fraudulent and criminal behaviour

The European Committee for Standardisation will assist policymakers and legislators on a national and EU wide level intended to provide EU players with a safe, ethical and secure environment. The work was the result of participation by law enforcement, criminologists, industry associations, academics, internet gambling operators, players associations and experts on problem gaming. All worked together to implement industry standards of conduct designed to provide players with the highest levels of protections possible.

Fortunately there have been few problems associated with online gaming. Chicanery in the internet bingo industry is all but unknown and the bad apples were weeded out years ago. Since most internet bingo and gaming providers serving Europe and the UK are publicly traded companies they have gone to great lengths to avoid scandals which would adversely affect the value of their shares on global exchanges. If only the US would legalize online gaming and adopt similar standards!