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How Are Bingo Sites Regulated in the UK?

With so many online bingo sites available to UK-based players, it’s easy to sign up and play bingo online a matter of seconds of a simple Google search. The reality is that many players don’t do any research into the site they’re playing on before they sign up and deposit some money. While this is okay if you only play on the most established sites, if you find yourself exploring some of the lesser-known sites, you might find yourself getting into trouble. In this post, we’re going to look at how bingo sites are regulated in the UK, so you can be sure that you sign up for a reputable site.

How are bingo sites regulated in the UK? 

In order to be regulated to operate in the UK, bingo sites must be licensed. When it comes to regulation in this country, the UK Gambling Commission is the most important regulatory body. They exist to ensure that gambling companies (including bingo sites) adhere to a precise set of rules that are in place to protect customers from malpractice within the sector. These were formed on the basis of the 2005 Gambling Act. As well as the UKGC, other noteworthy regulators within the industry include the Malta Gaming Authority and the Gibraltar Gambling Commission.

How do I know if a bingo site is licensed? 

You should only play bingo online with licensed operators. This is to ensure that if something is to go wrong, your money may be protected. What’s more, should a company infringe the law, you can report them to the respective licensing body, and they will be investigated. In order to ensure the site you wish to play on is licensed, you should first look for the license information, which can usually be found at the footer of the site’s homepage or through specific sites that list regulated options, like Trusted Bingo or Which Bingo. You can then use this information to go to the relevant commission and double-check that the site is, in fact, licensed under the terms stipulated on their page.

How does the licensing process work for bingo sites? 

Each regulatory body offers various types of licenses. In order to obtain a license, online casinos and bingo sites must undergo a comprehensive application process, which is designed to identify any illegitimate companies. If a company applies to the UKGC for a license, they usually have to wait for around sixteen weeks before they are granted a license, providing they meet the required terms and conditions set out. In order to maintain their license, companies must pay their annual fee and make sure they adhere to all the guidelines stipulated within the Gambling Act.

Why is licensing so important? 

The main reason why licensing is so important is because it’s a legal requirement within the UK. If companies don’t obtain a license, they can’t be held to account. What’s more, licensing is an important safety feature, as they need to have a responsible gaming area that helps to protect customers from problem gambling and addiction. The process of licensing gives you the peace of mind that the site you’re gambling on has been thoroughly vetted by the UK government and is considered a reputable organisation. This is super important before you get started, as it gives you the confidence that you can play without worrying about how your funds are being handled.

Overall, when it comes to online bingo sites, you need to check that the website you’re about to play on is registered to operate. If it isn’t licensed, you have no way of knowing how they manage your money and personal data, and you could be putting yourself at risk of fraud.