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eCOGRA Online Casinos & Guide

Found below are some of the top online casinos have been approved by eCOGRA. Casinos that bear the eCOGRA seal of approval have been deemed safe and fair online casinos to engage in playing at.




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Learn More About eCOGRA Continue Reading

Online gambling burst onto the scene in the mid 1990s, and was virtually an overnight success. But as with anything new, a great many disreputable operations sprang up that bilked players out of money or ran crooked, rigged games.

As more cheaters appeared, it created a real problem for player confidence. Obviously, if you attend a brick-and-mortar casino you can be reasonably sure of an honest game, but with the new world of online casinos, this was less the case, and when online players began swapping stories of being ripped off, the industry saw a drop in new visitors.

The situation continued to decline, until in 2002 some radical action was taken by and Microgaming. is a major publicly listed online casino operator, and Microgaming – also publicly traded – designs and distributes the software that drives many of the Internet's casinos. Both organisations perceived a very real threat to their core businesses, and so they joined forces to create the e-Commerce and Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance (eCOGRA) organisation.

ECOGRA is a non-profit regulatory body whose function is to monitor and vet the online gambling industry. Online casinos that meet eCOGRA's strict standards are awarded the eCOGRA Free and Fair seal, which most display prominently on their home page.

The organisation's mandate is to protect players by providing as much information as they can about their rights, and by ensuring that member casinos adhere to a set of rules that ensure fairness of play and set high standards of operation. The primary requirement is that member casinos behave with honesty.

For an online casino, continued membership of eCOGRA means being regularly audited by a third party company (approved by eCOGRA). Players can approach eCOGRA to view these audits, which are usually available through eCOGRA's website.

eCOGRA's rules require that member casinos may not use deceptive language in any advertising that invites players to join, and that industry-recognised measures are in place to protect the security of their players' personal information. The games on offer have to be run honestly, the day to day operating of the casino has to be monitored, and it has to be easy for players to collect their winnings.

Moreover, the principal operators within an online casino applying for eCOGRA membership are subjected to stringent background checks to ensure a clean reputation.

The existence of eCOGRA has done a lot for the industry in terms of boosting player confidence because players perceive it as an industry watchdog, which to a large extent it is, although the powers that it can exert extend only to its members. This means that many players who might otherwise have been wary of playing online are now doing so with peace of mind.

Apart from regulating its member casinos, one of the primary functions of eCOGRA which makes it so relevant is that it provides a platform for the resolution of disputes between players and casinos if something ever goes wrong. Should a dispute arise that cannot be resolved between a player and an eCOGRA certified casino, that player may approach eCOGRA for relief.

eCOGRA will then investigate the matter, and has proven that it has no compunction about taking action where necessary. In extreme instances, eCOGRA will even provide legal representation for aggrieved players, although this is hardly ever necessary as most matters are quickly and easily resolved. The organisation produces an annual report, available on their website and distributed to all members, that lists the number of complaints they received within a given financial year, and how those disputes were resolved.

eCOGRA is governed by a board made up of major players within the online gambling industry. The current Chief Executive Officer is Andrew Beveridge, with John Anderson (representing, Roger Raatgever (representing Microgaming) and Oliver Eckel (representing the Australian gambling giant Bwin).

Additionally there are several independent directors, all of whom have some background or experience in the gaming industry. This knowledge is crucial to their function, because admirably, in the interest of fairness, it is the sole mandate of the independent directors to assess whether a new online casino applying for membership of eCOGRA meets with the organisation's strict rules and standards, and thus qualifies for the Free and Fair seal.

Currently the independent directors are represented by William Henbrey, the former head of gaming services at BDO accountancy, Frank Catania, the former director of New Jersey's Gaming Enforcement Division, Willian Galaston, who served as Chief Inspector of the UK's Gambling Board, and Michael Hirst, who spent time working for Ladbrokes.

Since its inception the organisation has continued to grow, and today its members include more than 20 major players in the online gambling sector. More than 100 online casinos now bear eCOGRA's Free and Fair seal, inspiring confidence in players where they see it.

For more information about eCOGRA we suggest visiting their site directly at:

eCOGRA Related News & Articles

eCOGRA Expands Its Horizons - (Added January 15, 2009)

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