There has been a huge shift in the online gambling space in the US in recent times. Many states have introduced sports betting, online casinos, and poker platforms to their residents.
With huge sums of money being wagered through these various types of platforms, it has naturally garnered a lot of interest from investors eyeing up potential opportunities in the space. If you are interested in exploring this industry but want to know a bit more about the regulations that are involved, you’ve come to the right place.
This article will showcase the differences when it comes to regulation in the various major gambling markets across the world. This will allow you to be in a good position to analyse potential opportunities that might operate in various gambling sectors.
Heavily Regulated Markets – Sweden and the UK
We will first look at those gambling markets that are most heavily regulated. The likes of the UK Gambling Commission and the Swedish Gaming Authority are the most stringent gambling regulators around. You know that there are going to be major restrictions in place when it comes to operators in these regions.
The UK Gambling Commission makes sure that all operators are staying in line with regulations, while also updating the regulatory framework. It has introduced many major curtailments in recent years when it comes to various forms of gambling. This has included banning people from using credit cards to fund gambling, cut max bet sizes, and curtailing certain game features. Here you will find non UK casinos for UK players that are offered a large amount of dispute resolution assistance and protection from potential fraudulent activities conducted by casino providers.
The UK government is also nearing the completion of a review of gambling legislation that dates to 2005. It is expected that a lot more restrictions will come into place following the completion of this review, which the UK Gambling Commission will be at the centre of overseeing.
The Swedish gaming regulator has also developed a reputation for being a tricky taskmaster. While the regulated market in Sweden has only been up and running for a couple of years, operators have had to deal with a lot of teething issues.
One of the most controversial issues was the introduction of a very low monthly deposit limit for online casino players in Sweden during the COVID-19 pandemic. Operators had no choice in the matter, but were outspoken in their belief that this type of measure was only driving people to use black market gambling platforms and was not really protecting people.
Medium Regulated Markets – Germany and the Netherlands
There are some gambling markets that have a moderate level of restrictions in place. They still allow for a certain level of freedom for gamblers, while still having certain types of restrictions in place. The likes of the regulators in the Netherlands and Germany are an example of this type of regulation.
The regulated online gambling markets in these countries are very new, so the authorities are still learning along the way about what types of rules are effective and what might be overly restrictive. You will find certain types of restrictions on games and betting markets.
Responsible gambling is a big focus for these regulators. Those people who have a gambling issue can quickly exclude by linking their exclusion to their ID. This means that gambling both in land-based and online platforms is covered, something which has not been the case in many other established markets.
Lighter Regulations – Malta and Curacao
Some markets have a very light level of regulation. The Malta Gaming Authority is a popular licensing option for many operators that are looking to serve the European market. It has a base level of oversight in place which means that there is a solid level of trust in platforms that carry this type of license.
There will be a few basic restrictions in place, but generally, you’ll have access to a wide range of game features payment options and bet sizes. There is no mass self-exclusion service available, but most platforms with a Malta Gaming Authority license will have a range of responsible gambling tools you can use.
The government of Curaçao is another commonly seen regulator in the online gambling space. It is more of a token type of license as the Curaçao authorities do little to no oversight. Therefore, you’ll need to do even more due diligence if considering a platform that only has a Curaçao license as you won’ really be getting any other form of additional protection that you will get with a lot of other regulators, such as the Malta Gaming Authority.
Markets With No Regulation
Finally, you will come across online gambling sites that have no regulation whatsoever. These platforms will not have any type of gambling license, meaning that they are subject to absolutely zero oversight.
While the odd unregulated platform might be okay, they generally are to be avoided. This is because you will be taking a gamble trusting the platform with your personal information and funds.
While there will be the ultimate level of freedom, you can run into issues of not having withdrawals honored and games potentially being rigged. Therefore, for peace of mind, you are better off looking elsewhere.
What’s the Best Form of Regulation?
There is not going to be a definitive answer to this question. It will entirely depend on your specific situation. Unregulated platforms should most certainly be ruled out. Then the type of regulation that is best depends on your preferences for having plenty of oversight on operators or having a certain level of freedom as a gambler.
Now that you have a better understanding of the different forms of gambling regulation, you can use this information to inform you when analyzing potential investment opportunities in the online gambling space.