EGBA (European Gaming and Betting Association) is a non-profit association set up on March 27, 2007 by the seven leading online gaming operators in Europe: PartyGaming, bwin Group, Unibet, bet-at-home.com, Expekt, Interwetten and digibet.
The EGBA has two major objectives. The first is to create a uniform online gaming industry in Europe so that all European online gaming operators can offer their services across the continent. It believes that this objective is consistent with the overall philosophy of the European Union. In the fulfillment of this objective it is taking up the issue with European governments that are monopolizing or banning online gambling, taking legal recourse if needed. The second is to foster fair, secure and responsible gambling among the gaming operators and players. To this end it has created a code of conduct that is followed by all its members. The EGBA had recently commissioned a study that demonstrated that its members had better control over issues related to fairness, security and problem gambling than the monopolies operated by the governments of some of the European countries.
EGBA believes that it is the right of its members who are all licensed and regulated within the European Union to be able to provide their services in those EU countries on a non-discriminatory basis as compared to any state-owned provider and also subject to restrictions which are aimed only at legitimate objectives. We believe that any anti-online gambling legislation which is proposed or upheld by individual member states is likely to be breaking EU law. The EGBA is fighting against this discriminatory legislation as we believe that it is being introduced primarily to protect state-run monopolies.
Opening up markets to competition also gives consumers the benefits of lower prices and a wider choice of products and suppliers. A competitive environment, especially in the online world where technology reigns and trust in a brand is paramount, also helps promote consumer security and game fairness.
The EGBA technical Standards strengthen EGBA’s commitment to offering online gaming and betting activities in a secure, safe and reliable environment. In particular, this initiative aims to:
- preserve customer and stakeholder confidence in the industry;
- ensure that EGBA Members operate in accordance with the best practice and regulatory standards;
- address the perceived areas of concern raised in jurisdictions where a formal regulatory framework does not exist, or where only monopolies operate;
- substantiate commitment and compliance by consenting to rigorous annual independent assessments.
The EGBA technical Standards are founded upon nine principles which focus primarily on consumer protection. Each principle sets a directive from which a number of technical standards are derived. They define socially responsible practices that support the operations and business activities in relation to the products offered by each EGBA member. The members’ commitment is underpinned further by a rigorous independent assessment that is performed annually in order to substantiate compliance. The organization’s principles are the following:
- Promote responsible gaming and betting;
- Know-Your-Customer and prevent underage gaming and betting;
- Zero tolerance of fraudulent and criminal behavior;
- Customer privacy and information protection;
- Prompt and accurate pay-out making;
- Rigorous independent assessment of product fairness and randomness;
- Ethical and responsible marketing;
- Commitment to customer satisfaction and support;
- Responsible practices underpinned by a secure, safe and reliable environment.
If all the upper-described principles are observed that you can apply for EGBA membership. More information can be found at www.eu-ba.org