The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) has authorized independent testing laboratory eCOGRA to make available its Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) service to players at certain MGA licensed online gambling operators. Players can access eCOGRA’s dispute resolution services at 1,159 online gambling sites listed on the organization’s official website.
Says Tex Rees, Clear ADR Accredited Civil and Commercial Mediator in charge of eCOGRA’s dispute resolution service:
“All Malta-licensed operators are now required, in terms of the MGA Player Protection Directive 2018, to provide their players with access to an impartial third party dispute resolution service. Since many of our multi-jurisdictional clients are licensed by the MGA, we’ve made available our ADR service to these operators. We know, from their perspective, how important it is that they can come to us for a full suite of compliance services.”
A Little History
eCOGRA has been around for quite a while, having provided “fast and impartial” dispute resolution services to players free of charge for 15 years. Three years ago, the organization was approved by the UK Gambling Commission to provide its ADR service to remote gambling operators licensed in the British market.
So far, the organization has handled over 10,000 disputes, involving some of the leading industry names, such as White Hat Gaming, Betway, Gamesys, bwin.party, 888 Casino, Unibet, 32Red, Mr Green, and Skill On Net.
The testing lab was founded with one goal in mind: to “establish and improve operational standards and player safety requirements in the online gambling space.” To that end, it has accumulated considerable experience in implementing international best practice standards and requirements, as well as in ensuring their maintenance and implementation through continual review and monitoring.
The organization is a regulatory audit partner to over 100 operators, software providers, and other relevant iGaming service providers across multiple jurisdictions. A team comprising professional auditors with Big 4 auditing firm experience, information security experts, test engineers and responsible gambling specialists work tirelessly on ensuring top-notch customer support.
eCOGRA has been awarded the United Kingdom Accreditation Service (UKAS) ISO approval ISO/IEC 17025:2005 : General Requirements for the competence of testing and calibration laboratories for the United Kingdom, Sweden and Denmark, as well as ISO/IEC 17021-1:2015 - a prerequisite for carrying out third-party ISO/IEC 27001 audits and accredited certifications of Information Security Management Systems (ISMS).
Back in June, the organization announced the latest updates of its self-regulatory requirements, better known as eCOGRA Generally Accepted Practices (eGAP). The changes encompass improvements across multiple sectors, including new legislation, emerging trends, and the “need to achieve the objectives of player protection, fair gaming and responsible conduct by all relevant parties involved.”
The newly-introduced requirements address responsible gambling and promotional practices of eCOGRA's seal holders and take into account important aspects of information security and data privacy pertaining to the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
CEO, Andrew Beveridge said at the time that “the latest amendments are aimed at refining and advancing eGAP to ensure that the framework remains relevant in protecting players and promoting operator and software supplier responsibility towards players”.
“Players at over 1,000 online gambling sites able to submit disputes to eCOGRA”, ecogra.org, November 12, 2018.