We’ve all seen news about online bingo sites that have been shut down, or read warnings that state that a particular online bingo site has done something dodgy and is currently blacklisted. But just how is a bingo site regulated and who has the power, the authority and the prowess to regulate such online gambling sites?
If you were to have doubts about the legality of an online bingo site that you are playing at, who is comfort you? Who has the power and is trustworthy enough to tell you that it is all going to be okay?
Online bingo sites are all run digitally using random number generators (RGN's), so who is to say that you are actually getting a fair game of bingo? And, that the bingo games aren’t rigged so that nobody wins the big prize? Who can tell, and how do they know? These are big, big questions and as you might expect, they need some seriously good answers!
Basically, it all comes down to a number of factors. The first task of being a legitimate bingo site is to get a gambling license. A gambling license doesn’t just permit a bingo site to offer gambling services for real money; it also means that their site and technology has been checked by the license provider to make certain that they are offering fair gambling services, and that they can’t cheat you out of your money.
Primarily licenses for bingo come out of four main providers for bingo players based in Europe. You have the Lotteries and Gaming Authority of Malta, the Gibraltar Licensing Authority, the Isle of Man Gambling Supervision Commission, and the Alderney Gambling Control Commission. All four of these are authorised by the UK Gambling Commission, making them one hundred percent legal. Any bingo site claiming to have one of these four licenses can be checked by you to make certain that they are operating legally.
Independent auditors also contribute to making certain that online bingo sites are safe and fair. They periodically test the RNG’s (Random Number Generators) at online bingo sites to make certain that they are paying out at a fair rate, and that nothing is being rigged by the operators of the site. Lots of bingo sites will also provide technical data on their payout percentages if asked, and indeed some offer it freely on the site to gamers at will.
However, watchdogs also play a massive part in ensuring that online bingo sites are regulated properly. These watchdog sites investigate all claims of dodgy affairs, illegal activity and unpaid winnings by gamers (you can e-mail them your complaint), and they decide whether or not the bingo site has acted inappropriately. If it has indeed done so, they will place the bingo site on a blacklist and warn gamers across the world not to venture into that site, costing the bingo irreparable damage to its reputation.
As they investigate your case for you, they could discover that it is indeed the player’s fault (i.e. not meeting a wagering requirement, so no withdrawal is possible) and nothing will come of it. But generally, if you have a valid case, the watchdogs will do all they can to ensure that everybody knows that a bingo site is cheating.
Bingo game site reviewers also do their part in the regulating of bingo sites, in that they actively write about blacklisted bingo sites to spread the word across the bingo community that bingo site X has been doing Y to some of its players. Never underestimate the power of the written word when it comes to reporting dodgy sites.
Regulators of bingo sites aren’t always making certain that bingo sites behave however. It is also common for a player to misbehave. Such actions that can involve players misbehaving could be fraudulently using any person’s identity or credit card to wager online at said bingo site. It could also be that a player is gambling when they are under age. As such the regulators must also watch these players with keen eyes to make certain that the bingo sites themselves are protected for fraudsters, crooks and underage gamblers.
Financial transactions are also regulated, although often by individual banking and payment method companies. These track your transactions and make certain they reach the intended destination with no interruptions or hassles.
You might be surprised to learn all of the ins and outs of regulating any given online bingo site, but for the most part every single party does their little bit to contribute to the overall regulation of the bingo site. As part of a community, a family, with everybody going their bit, a bingo site and the players themselves are fully covered and 100% legal. It takes all these and more to run a good, fair and legal bingo site, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.