Curacao Changes Standards of Egaming Licenses
Not all online casino gaming licenses are created equal. For example, a license from Curacao is not viewed the same as ones from Malta or the UK Gambling Commission. In fact, there are some sites licensed by Curacao that are somewhat suspect.
However, that is about to change. The global pandemic has forced Curacao to get help from The Netherlands, and that help comes with a cost. Curacao must change some of their policies in how they conduct business, including how they regulate online casinos. In the end, it will actually improve the quality of licenses from the country.
Curacao to Change Licensing Procedures and Guidelines
The global pandemic has forced all of us to make hard choices and Curacao is no different. They have been forced to reach out to The Netherlands for financial assistance and that help comes at a cost. Curacao must now give in to certain demands on how they conduct business, and that includes how they issue and regulate online gambling licenses.
The first difference is the price. Curacao was one of the cheapest legitimate online casino licenses to acquire at around $35,000. Now, licenses will cost online casinos $134,000. That’s a significant increase which will probably drive away smaller casinos and those that are less than legitimate.
Next, some of the guidelines for licensing will toughen. Casinos must follow EU guidelines regarding privacy and customer protections. Also, if a company that holds s a license is purchased by another, the new company is responsible for following licensing procedures of the license will be immediately revoked.
Next, online casinos must stop the practice of player targeting. For example, casinos cannot go out of their way to target high rollers or other potentially vulnerable customers. Also, casinos must have tools in place to prevent customers from overspending, thus reducing problem gambling on the website.
Curacao Will Actually Act Like a Regulator
One reason that Curacao was a popular regulator was that the company was very hands-off. They didn’t do a lot of the things that you see major regulators do, such as inspections and testing of websites. That will change under the new guidelines.
Online casinos will now undergo regular testing and inspections by Curacao. Sites will also be subject to information requests like the UKGC and other primary regulators. Gone will be the days of Curacao issuing a license and the casino doing what they want until they show significant signs of fraud.
Casinos will also need to show they are financially stable and able to pay out winnings, especially prizes for progressive jackpot slots. Casinos will likely be required to prove they have segregated funds for players. Players that remember the Full Tilt Poker fiasco understand the importance of this.
What Will Happen as a Result of These Changes?
The most significant impact will be on online casinos that are taking a minimalist approach to online casino gambling. Those casinos will be forced to change their procedures to meet new guidelines or forced to give up their license.
For small casinos, we could see some go offline completely. Others may simply operate without a license. Those casinos should be avoided as you never knew when they will shut down and take your funds.
These changes will also impact new casinos. Legitimate online casinos will have to shell out more money to launch, and this may slow the growth of new legitimate casinos. Granted, scam casinos will continue to pop up, but they will be a bit easier to spot as they can’t just throw a little money at Curacao to get a license.
The biggest change will be in the quality of the Curacao license. Now, a license from Curacao will have more weight than in the past. It will be on par with licenses from Malta. The stigma of a Curacao license will be reduced, and in time a license from the Government of Curacao will actually be seen as a good thing rather than something to raise an eyebrow at.