Welcome to our UKGC review for UK players, which covers all crucial things you should know about the UK Gambling Commission, its operations and how it affects you as a player. You’ll find general information about the UKGC, its alternatives and answers to some popular FAQs about the premier gambling commission.
The UKGC is the authority on the UK market and the most reputable gambling agency in the world. Sites licensed by the UKGC can operate anywhere without restrictions. However, there are many other similar agencies, and each has unique standards and licenses. Still, none is as trustworthy as the UK Gambling Commission.
The UKGC is a state-commissioned agency that regulates all gambling activity in the UK, from licensing operators to monitoring compliance and introducing new regulation. It was established back under the 2005 Gambling Act and oversees various types of casino activity, including arcades, bingo, betting, slots, lotteries and remote gambling.
According to the stated aims, the UKGC is all about protecting vulnerable players and eliminating crime from gambling. In 2007, the UKGC replaced the Gaming Board for Great Britain and began regulating the National Lottery six years later. The commission also introduced a mandatory GamStop program that all operators must participate in to help vulnerable players.
Although UKGC casinos can operate anywhere, there are various casino sites without UK licence. The commission only affects operators looking to provide their products to the UK market. However, UK punters aren’t barred from joining offshore casinos licensed in the US, Canada, Australia, Asia, and other places.
UKGC: General Information
The goals of UKGC include keeping crime out of gambling, ensuring gambling is conducted fairly and openly and protecting children and vulnerable players from gambling. Since its establishment, the commission has introduced various regulations aimed at consumer protection and continues to shape the industry. All United Kingdom operators must comply with the UKGC requirements or risk losing their license. The commission can also fine operators and works together with the policed department to eliminate crime and fraud from gambling. Here are some of the top responsibilities of the UKGC.
- Licensing of UK Gambling Operators:
The UKGC is the sole commission mandated to license gambling operators, including online casinos, bingo sites, lotteries, mobile casinos and so forth. The commission has various requirements and standards that operators must meet to qualify for a gambling license.
The UKGC oversees gambling operations in the UK, including visiting licensed operators and reviewing their financial information. Apart from examining operator activities, the commission monitors developments in the gambling industry and can issue advice or recommendations to amend existing laws.
- Regulation and Introduction of new Rules:
All UKGC responsibilities are included in the Gambling Act 2005, and one of the notable roles is to introduce new rules. The commission has introduced many rules, including GamStop self-exclusion, although players can still find UK gambling operators without GamStop.
Alternative Authorities to UKGC
As aforesaid, the UKGC is designed to regulate UK gambling. However, there are many offshore gambling operators in the US, Canada, Australia, Asia, and Africa. They don’t have to comply with the UKGC rules and restrictions unless they intend to operate directly in the UK. Here are the top commissions that oversee gambling outside the United Kingdom.
- Curacao eGaming Authority
- Swedish Gambling Authority
- Malta Gaming Authority
United Kingdom Gambling Commission FAQs
What is UKGC?
UKGC is the official commission that regulates offline and online gambling in the United Kingdom (England, Scotland and Wales). It was established per the Gambling Act 2005 to replace the Gaming Board for Great Britain. You can visit the official UKGC site for more about their services and operations.
Should all gambling sites have a UKGC licence?
No. Only UK sites are affected by UKGC. However, there are many regions with fully regulated gambling and commissions that oversee the activity. Players can enjoy games on sites licensed in Curacao, Malta, Alderney, Sweden and other regions. Also, the UKGC doesn’t prohibit UK players from signing up in offshore casinos.
Are UKGC and GamStop the same?
No. GamStop is a self-exclusion scheme introduced by the commission. However, all UK operators licensed by the UKGC must participate in GamStop. It involves collecting player information during the signup process and comparing it against the GamStop database to block players who have voluntarily registered to self-exclude from online gambling and its operations.
What is the difference between gambling sites with and without a UKGC licence?
Many UK players prefer to play only on sites with UKGC licence because they have local support and were designed to protect UK players. The UKGC also upholds the highest gambling standards, and its operators can operate anywhere in the globe. However, there are other reputable gambling licenses from Curacao, Malta, Alderney, Sweden and other places.