UK Gambling Commission: Establishing Security

History

The UK Gambling Commission was officially established in 2005 by the Gambling Act that was passed that year. However, the Commission was not fully operational until 2007. By that time, it had taken over the responsibilities of the Gambling Board for Great Britain.

Since then, the Commission has overseen regulating sports betting, arcades, slots, casinos, both brick-and-mortar and online, and, starting from 01/10/2013 it had taken the responsibilities of handling and regulating the national lottery when the National Lottery Commission merged with the Commission.

The Gambling Commission is an executive non-departmental body governed by the Department of Culture, Media, and Sport.

Gambling Commission

4th Floor

Victoria Square House

Birmingham B2 4BP

Phone: 0121 230 6700 (in the UK)

International Callers: +44 121 230 6700

Email: [email protected]

Website: www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk

Jurisdiction

Contrary to its full name, the UK Gambling Commission does not have powers over all parts of the United Kingdom. The Gambling Commission is responsible for governing gambling operations in Great Britain, but it does not have jurisdiction in Northern Ireland. The latter has got its own regulating body. The Gambling Commission also doesn't extend to Commonwealth nations – they all have their own regulatory bodies.

Goals & Aims

The first and foremost aim of the UK Gambling Commission is to keep the gambling crime-free, open and fair. It is also tasked with protecting children and preventing people from developing a gambling addiction. Indeed, whenever you open an online casino page, on the bottom, you will find a warning and a plea that you ask for assistance if you feel yourself getting addicted.

Seeing as the Commission issues licenses, it can also revoke them. In the pursuit of fairness and end to manipulation, the Commission is also investigating casinos to prevent illegal gambling and slot manipulation. It can also issue fines to those who break the law and commit an infraction. Lastly, the Commission advises the government, both national and local, on various gambling issues and problems.

The regulatory body also deals with remote gambling. If a casino is based in Great Britain and has all its equipment in the country, the Commission will issue a license without any problem. But if an off-shore gambling operator is looking to expand and include players from Great Britain, they must obtain an exclusive license, as stated in the Gambling Act of 2014. Such company would also have to procure a license from Gibraltar Betting and Gaming Association.

To ensure everything is running smoothly, the Gambling Commission has field agents that commit to visiting casinos and other establishments to inspect their operations. During these inspections, the Commission can advise them of changing their operations and make amendments to follow the law.

Should the establishment break the law, various penalties might be imposed on it, ranging from monetary fines, all the way to having their license revoked. Some operators can get blacklisted, and all persons and operators that have received a penalty or have been sanctioned are displayed in the Gambling Commission's official website.

With all said and done, it should be noted that the Commission does not accept nor manage players’ complaints. These complaints are redirected to Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) services. However, all these services are approved by the Commission too. But be advised – all ADRs are independent, and their efficiency may vary. Depending on what ADR a casino uses, you may have a different experience.

Lastly, the Gambling Commission is concerned about players’ safety. The regulatory body pays special attention to protection against cyber-theft. This is of vital importance to the Commission, and many online casinos seek to protect their channels with SSL encryption, and the Gambling Commission will settle for nothing less. Also, the Commission advises the casinos to be audited by external authorities to ensure fairness, and to make sure the data doesn’t get manipulated.

Conclusion

Well, that’s it for the United Kingdom Gambling Commission. Since 2007, it is the most relevant gambling regulation body. Its task is to review casinos and make sure they operate within the boundaries of the 2005’s Gambling Act. As of 2013, the Gambling Commission also regulates the national lottery.

There is no casino and no gambling establishment that can run without the approval of the Gambling Commission. However, this regulatory body doesn't cover all United Kingdom (they have no jurisdiction in Northern Ireland), and they don't include ADRs. Aside from that, they handle all licensing, license reviews, fines, and crime and fraud prevention.

Updated: 16.05.2022