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Seals of approval: Gain players’ trust with certified games

Petr Stehlik
February 29, 2024
15 min
18748

Gambling certifications issued by third-party testing agencies like eCOGRA have become a near-necessity for iGaming operators. Given the level of competition in the industry, trying to attract players without sporting one of these seals on your homepage is trickier than ever. Keep reading to learn what these certifications are, why you need them, and how Slotegrator can help you cooperate with certified game providers.

Online gambling certifications let users know whether the website they’re visiting is a safe gaming platform or if they’re taking a risk just by making a deposit.

These certifications cover many aspects of a casino, from the fairness of the titles offered to the responsible gaming measures the operator has in place to protect vulnerable players.

This article will give you a breakdown of the main aspects certification organizations focus on when conducting their audits, explaining why these are important to players and market regulators. A gambling certification is crucial for your online casino’s success — and the certified gaming providers we partner with can add more legitimacy to your platform.

Game certification

There are several organizations that certify iGaming content. Testing agencies and laboratories like eCOGRA, BMM Testlabs, GLI, iTechLabs, TriSigma, SIQ, and QUINEL independently verify that online casino games provide a fair and transparent experience to the players.

The two critical features of games that are subject to in-depth testing are return to player rate and random number generation. The tests are performed both on the supplier side, to verify that the specifications declared by the developers are accurate, and on the vendor side, to confirm that the operator hasn’t tampered with the product and is being transparent towards players.

Return to player

The average return to player, better known by the acronym RTP, is a percentage that indicates the expected ratio between the payouts dispensed by a gaming machine (particularly slots) and the amount staked by customers playing it. For transparency, regulated jurisdictions require operators to publish a list reporting the RTP percentage for each machine available on their website.

However, as the RTP is calculated over tens of thousands of games, customers can't expect individual playing sessions to have a return equal to the declared ratio, so they have no way to confirm the veracity of the stated numbers. This is where independent testing agencies come into play. After validating the accuracy of the machines' logs, they proceed to analyze the payouts' distribution patterns to verify that these are in line with the declared RTPs. Usually, this type of test is run monthly.

Random number generators

Random number generation is the core of the iGaming industry. A random number generator (RNG) is a tool used to create a sequence of numbers that cannot be reasonably predicted. Each set of numbers the RNG produces is converted into the distribution of symbols appearing on a slot machine's reels after a spin or the hand dealt in a card game. When we talk about "certified games" offered by developers, we're usually referring to products whose RNG has been tested and verified on the supplier side.

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RTP testing is a reliable way to measure the fairness of slots, as these require no input by the player to produce a result. However, it isn't an effective tool when it comes to, for example, card games, as player actions impact their RTP. For these kinds of games, the best way to guarantee fairness is to verify a machine's RNG functionality.

RNG audits are performed by comparing the card distribution and the incidence of particular events in a machine's logs against their theoretical probabilities. In much the same way, this type of test can be performed on dice games like craps and ball games like bingo to verify their integrity.

Provably Fair games

One effective method for a casino to gain the trust of players is by implementing Provably Fair games on their platforms.

Provably Fair in online gambling refers to an algorithm used to analyze and validate fair play. These games aim to bring transparency and accountability to players, ensuring that each game round's outcome is fair and free from manipulation by the casino or any third party.

The algorithms and mechanisms used to determine game outcomes are open and visible to players. This means that players can examine the underlying code or cryptographic processes to verify the game's fairness.

Provably fair games employ genuinely unpredictable random number generation techniques. This prevents any entity, including the casino operator, from predicting or manipulating game results. This also provides reassurance to players that they are not being deceived and enhances their trust in the fairness of the games.

Game results are recorded on a public ledger, such as a blockchain, ensuring that they cannot be altered or tampered with after the fact. This enables players to audit previous game results and confirm that they have not been manipulated.

By implementing such games into your casino platform, you demonstrate your commitment to fairness and transparency. This can help casinos establish a positive reputation within the gambling community and attract more players over time.

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Live dealer studios

Live dealer gaming, a growing branch of the industry, requires a particular set of inspections and tests. On top of monitoring game results to verify their statistical probability and RTP, certification agencies verify the training of all staff members who are part of the product. They also check the policies implemented by providers to resolve errors and irregularities and to prevent cheating or collusion between players and croupiers.

Fitness for jurisdiction

Each regulated gambling jurisdiction imposes unique requirements for gaming platforms and their back-office systems, administrative procedures, and marketing activities.

Certification organizations are authorized to perform detailed regulatory compliance audits to verify whether a business and its product satisfy the requirements set forth by local governing bodies.

Operators can rely on certifiers' reports to source secure third-party software and adjust their own platforms to each market's peculiarities. This lets them avoid committing irregularities and incurring sanctions.

ESG

ESG stands for Environmental, Social, and Governance. It's a framework used by investors and businesses to evaluate and measure the societal impact and sustainability of their operations.

Positive ESG practices can enhance the reputation of an online gambling business, leading to increased trust and loyalty from customers, investors, regulators, and other stakeholders. Conversely, negative ESG practices, such as environmental negligence, unethical behavior, or inadequate responsible gambling measures can damage the company's reputation and lead to regulatory scrutiny, legal challenges, and loss of business.

Given the growing emphasis on sustainability and social responsibility across industries, online gambling businesses that prioritize ESG considerations are likely to gain a competitive advantage and position themselves as responsible corporate citizens in the eyes of the public.

However, it is not only about reputation. Some countries require businesses to report their company adherence to ESG standards.

Overall, adhering to ESG standards will not only help your business stand out as a reliable and trustworthy company but will also ensure compliance with certain countries' regulations.

Information security

Information security is a vital aspect of any online service. As operators have access to personal user information and their financial details, they are expected to abide by strict confidentiality standards and employ secure software platforms to handle the data.

These standards are in principle jurisdiction-specific, but they have been impacted by the introduction of laws with extraterritorial effects such as the European Union's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Since 2018, the iGaming industry has been experiencing a trend towards the tightening of privacy regulations, as well as an increase in public awareness, so it's more important than ever to reassure players with relevant certifications.

Some testing organizations are accredited to test operators' security management systems and procedures against ISO standards and can perform customized assessments of their cybersecurity capabilities ranging from penetration to social engineering tests.

Similarly, studios that offer their platforms and back-office solutions can have their products tested and certified. If you choose to rely on third-party software, the best and safest option is obviously to pick a certified product.

In addition to this, certain regulated markets require automated reporting. Automated reporting consists of a direct connection between the machines offered by an operator and the jurisdiction's regulatory body. Testing organizations can carry out checks to verify the integrity of the data sent and the processes implemented to satisfy the regulatory requirements, both for in-house and third-party solutions and their integration.

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Protection of players and vulnerable parts of the population

Most regulated jurisdictions aim at striking a balance between liberalizing the gambling industry and ensuring that it doesn't turn into a widespread social problem; for this reason, player protection is taken very seriously. There are strict measures in place to regulate the visibility and contents of operators' marketing efforts and prevent minors from accessing gaming services.

Underage gambling is generally prevented by implementing a thorough player verification process that requires users to provide identification documents. Other than that, operators are expected to clearly indicate the age restrictions in place on their website, immediately lock any account suspected to be controlled by an underage individual, and have policies in place to refund their deposits in a timely manner.

The assessment of responsible marketing requires a two-tiered analysis.

First, operators are expected to abide by the general regulations on gambling advertising imposed within a jurisdiction, which can range from limitations on the ability to air ads during certain hours of the day to a complete ban on PR materials. These are closely tied to the prevention of underage gambling.

On top of this, regulators expect promotional materials to steer clear of pressuring, misleading, and unrealistic content. There should be no content promoting risky behavior like chasing losses or using gambling to attempt to overcome personal or financial difficulties.

All direct advertising and promotional activities should also be factual and clear, make all the relevant terms and conditions easily accessible, and offer players the ability to opt out of receiving further communications.

Adherence to responsible gambling principles requires operators to provide players not only with warnings and links to resources that can help with problem gambling, but also practical tools to control their gaming experience.

The most important among these tools are limits and a self-exclusion option.

Limits can be of two types: deposit limits and loss limits. These allow players to set a maximum amount that they can deposit (or lose while playing) within a predetermined time frame (usually daily, weekly, and monthly). Any request to lower these limits should be enacted immediately, whereas attempts to raise them should be met with a mandatory waiting period of at least 24 hours.

Self-exclusion is a function that allows players to lock themselves out of their accounts for a certain period of time, often six months or more, during which they shall not receive any promotional material either. The option for a short 24-hour cooling-off period is also common.

Prevention of fraudulent activity

To comply with anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-financing of terrorism (CFT) legislation, operators have to implement dedicated systems and procedures which are subject to thorough audits conducted by authorities and certification organizations.

Online gambling operators must take all necessary measures to ensure the legality of transactions. This includes documenting them and performing them by trackable electronic means. Regulations are stringent, and no transfer can be sent or received if there's any reason to suspect a link to criminal activities. Anything suspicious, like unusual movements of funds or activity by politically exposed persons, has to be promptly reported to the relevant institutions and investigation units.

Certification organizations only award their seals of approval to iGaming websites that follow local regulations as well as industry best practices when it comes to all of the above issues. To ensure that their product is up to par, operators can refer to the exhaustive guidelines and checklists published by the certifiers.

Customer satisfaction

Last but not least, certification agencies consider whether iGaming businesses are committed to providing their customers with an enjoyable experience. This is measured mainly with two metrics: excellent customer support and timely transactions.

Ideally, customers should be able to reach support around the clock and log disputes and complaints at any hour of the day. Disputes should be dealt with in a timely fashion, and players should be allowed access to an independent third party for mediation and resolution. Payments should be processed strictly within the time required to perform the necessary identification and AML checks, avoiding any undue delay.

How can Slotegrator help?

By utilizing AI-based technologies in our platform's modules, Slotegrator can help your business effectively achieve its objectives.

Know your customer (KYC) measures are crucial for online casino platforms to comply with regulations and prevent fraud. However, traditional KYC processes can be time-consuming and potentially drive customers away. Therefore, we have integrated AI-driven KYC modules that streamline the entire process. These modules enable operators to expedite verification processes and block prohibited IP addresses. They also assist in establishing registration data, verifying information, and determining when ID verification is required.

Our KYC module meets the regulatory standards of both Curaçao and Malta, making it an ideal solution for novice operators and those venturing into the European market. Request a free consultation to get our help in gambling license acquisition.

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Furthermore, fraud remains a constant concern in the industry, with risks including account fraud, identity theft, bonus abuse, and affiliate fraud. Our platform’s AI-powered anti-fraud module helps detect and prevent such activities, safeguarding the integrity of the casino. These modules analyze user behavior, identify suspicious activity, and implement measures like bonus rejection or account blocks.

Moreover, AI-driven business intelligence (BI) tools provide operators with real-time analytics to make informed decisions. These tools offer key statistics on revenue, player numbers, and profitability, allowing operators to compare performance with competitors and optimize their growth strategies.

Innovative AI solutions, such as ChatGPT integration and multiplayer chat functionalities, further enhance player engagement and retention, fostering community-building within online casinos.

Learn more information about our Turnkey platform and its features.

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Final considerations

Slotegrator gives you easy access to scores of certified games and platforms developed by some of the best studios in the industry, ready to be integrated into your project through our powerful game integration solution, APIgrator.

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APIgrator itself has been awarded the prestigious GLI-19 certification following tests performed by the Slovenian Institute of Quality and Metrology (SIQ), one of the leading laboratories in the industry. The GLI-19 standard has been set forth by Gaming Laboratories International and outlines the most comprehensive set of practices and technical requirements for interactive gaming systems.

Below you can find a list of our partner providers and the third-party RTP, RNG, and live dealer certifications they hold for their products.

ProviderType of casino gamesCertificates
1x2 NetworkSlots, casual games, lotteries, virtual sports, table gamesNMI Testing, Gambling Aware, Quinel
Apollo GamesSlots, roulette, card games, table gamesGLI RNG & SW, EZU, TSU
Apparat GamingSlotsiTech Labs, GLI19
Barbara BangSlots, table gamesGaming Associates Europe
Belatra GamesSlots, tablesGLI, Trisigma, SIQ, BMM Testlabs
BetsolutionsSlots, tables, bettingGLI
BGamingSlots, tables, lotteriesiTech Labs
Booming GamesSlotsQUINEL
BooongoSlotsQUINEL
BoldplaySlots, casual games, table gamesGaming Associates
CaletaSlots, casual games, lotteriesGLI-19 BMM
CT Gaming InteractiveSlotsBMM Testlabs
DLVSlotsBMM Testlabs
EndorphinaSlotsGLI, iTech Labs
EvolutionSlots, tables, live gameseCOGRA
EvoplaySlotseCOGRA, GLI
Excellent ReelSlots, casual games, virtual sportsMTI, BMM Testlabs
EzugiLive dealersSCG-Bulgaria, Itech Labs, BMM, RSG-Eclipse
Funky GamesSlots, table games, casual gameseCOGRA
GameArtSlotsGLI, SIQ
GamshySlotsBMM Testlabs, iTech Labs
GamzixSlotsGLI, iTech Labs, Gambling Business Monitoring Center (Belarus)
Green Jade GamesSlotseCOGRA
HabaneroSlots, tablesiTech Labs, BMM Testlabs
IgrosoftSlotsiTech Labs
iSoftBetSlots, tableseCogra, iTechLabs, GLI, QUINEL
JustplaySlotsiTech Labs
Kalamba GamesSlotseCOGRA, GLI
Lotto Instant WinLive gameseCOGRA
MicrogamingSlotseCOGRA
NetGame EntertainmentSlotsGLI
OneTouchSlotsGLI
Platipus GamingSlots, tablesiTech Labs
PlaysonSlots, tablesQUINEL
Pragmatic PlaySlots, tables, lotteries, live gamesGaming Associates, GLI, QUINEL
Real DealerLive gameseCOGRA
Red Rake GamingSlots, tablesBMM Testlabs
Revolver GamingSlotsSQS, Gaming Associates
RTG SlotsSlotsBMM Testlabs
SpadegamingSlotsiTech Labs
SpinomenalSlots, tables, lotterieseCOGRA, BMM Testlabs
Super SpadeLive gamesGLI, GamCare
ThunderkickSlotsQUINEL
Tom Horn GamingSlots, tablesiTech Labs, GLI
Triple CherrySlotsGLI
True LabSlotsiTech Labs
Vivo GamingLive gamesGLI
WazdanSlots, tablesGLI
XPGLive gamesiTech Labs

To add their certified games to your online casino, get in touch with our sales department – we will be happy to give you a demo and answer any questions you might have regarding our partner providers’ certifications and the process of game integration.

Petr Stehlik
Petr Stehlik
Lawyer
In 2016, Petr graduated from the Law Faculty of Charles University in Prague. The main area of law on which he focused both during and after his university studies is software law (and intellectual property in general). After graduating, he briefly worked at a medium-sized law firm in Prague, but in 2018 he joined Slotegrator, where he has been working ever since and where he handles the company’s day-to-day legal matters.

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