Any online casino which wants to claim that it is safe, secure, fair and friendly needs to be on the receiving end of an online casino license. Most of the major casinos are, but there are always questions concerning smaller-scale casinos. One of the most recognisable licensing jurisdictions in the world is the Malta Gaming Authority (or MGA), and many of Canada’s top casinos feature their licenses. What is the MGA, what does it stand for, and why are Canadian players better off playing at an MGA-licensed online casino over others? As ever, CanadaOnlineCasinos.com reveals all.
What are Licensing Jurisdictions and Authorities?
First and foremost, you need to understand what a licensing jurisdiction or authority is. A licensing jurisdiction or a gambling authority is an organisation which independently licenses online casinos. Their licenses are what makes online casinos legal or illegal. Of course, the legality of casinos still depends on the gambling laws of your country, as well as whether or not they recognise the licensing jurisdiction.
A typical licensing authority (such as the MGA) will check casinos, ensure that they are safe, certify them as such, and continually monitor them to ensure that they are behaving and offering fair and secure gaming.
Where Does the Malta Gaming Authority Come In?
The Malta Gaming Authority (or MGA, if you prefer) is one of the most reputable of all. The amount of effort the licensing authority puts into checking their casinos and ensuring that they hold their end of the bargain in terms of fair play and security is second perhaps only to the UK Gambling Commission. Ultimately, this kind of dedication is very much something you want to see from any issuer of remote gambling licenses.
Reasons to Choose Casinos Licensed by the MGA
Why choose to play at an MGA licensed casino, over perhaps one licensed out of the UK or Curacao? There are several reasons why each of these licensing regulators and authorities stands out in their own way. However, here is what you are guaranteed to get when you decide to play at an MGA casino in Canada:
- Certified: Each online casino has been tested and approved before they are awarded their license. Moreover, the MGA certifies that these casinos are safe and continually monitors them to ensure that they keep maintaining high standards.
- Secure: Each MGA licensed casino uses SSL (Secure Socket Layer) encryption of the highest calibre, and has firewall technology in place, too. Ultimately, they are very difficult for people to hack and steal data from.
- Best Games: Most of the leading providers in the online casino world are licensed out of Malta, too. This means that MGA licensed casinos often have access to the best games from the top developers out there. If you want to play the very best games from the biggest names, then a Maltese licensed casino is the way to go.
- Protection: MGA licensed casinos often feature player protection. These can include safeguards against problem gambling, responsible gaming policies and banking protection.
- No Foul Play: A Maltese licensed casino must strictly adhere to the rules and terms of their license. The MGA bears no bones about stripping casinos of their license (thus making them rogue, or illegal) if they don’t play fair and maintain high standards. Other authorities, such as Curacao, do this far less frequently.
Let us examine some of these perks in closer detail…
Trusted and Respected
The Malta Gaming Authority is so trusted and respected that merely holding a license from this provider is often enough to convince players that the casino is safe. As mentioned above, there are plenty of criteria which a casino must adhere to, so players know that as soon as they see the MGA license logo (and naturally, correct licensing information) that they can trust the casino in question.
Play Ball or Lose Your License
Many licensing jurisdictions are more than happy to issue licenses (naturally, they receive revenue from this) to casino sites, but don’t do much more than give them the once over. The Malta Gaming Authority is quite different. It regularly checks casinos to ensure that they are playing ball. There have been several instances where an MGA casino has dropped the ball and started getting sloppy with their service. These casinos were immediately threatened with shaping up or losing their license. Of course, they obliged. Safeguards such as this ensure that you are always playing in a secure and fair environment.
Dedication to Responsible Gaming
Malta Gaming Authority licensed betting sites are required to promote responsible gaming. This doesn’t just mean “saying it”, but actually offering services and tools to help players make responsible choices when betting. Here are a few of the commonly provided responsible gambling tools at MGA casinos…
- Deposit Caps: Essentially, these allow you to set deposit limits, so that you never top-up your balance by more than you can afford.
- Wager Caps: Similarly, wagering caps allow players to set limits on how much they can spend in a given timeframe.
- Time Caps: Putting a cap on how long you can gamble for is another option in the responsible gaming tools repertoire at MGA casinos.
- Self-Exclusion/Cool-Down Periods: Every player at a casino licensed out of Malta will have the right to take a break. Self-exclusion and cool-down periods allow you to shut yourself out of your casino account for a predetermined period of time, in a bid to stave off gambling addiction.
- KYC: MGA casinos must also offer a KYC process. Known as the Know Your Customer process; it ensures that the casino checks players. Identity verification and proof of payment checks ensure that money laundering and identity theft are not issues at Maltese licensed casinos.
- Player Protection: As mentioned, MGA-licensed casinos must also offer player protection. This means that in the unlikely event that your money or data is hacked or stolen, the casino must take responsibility and cover you. Moreover, they have to pay out winnings in a reasonable time, and without unreasonable fees attached, as well as a few other protective and preventive measures.
Problem Gambling Compliance
All good online casinos with a Maltese licence are required to offer help to players via problem gambling platforms. It is a requirement to obtain an MGA gambling license. These casinos will need to be affiliated with GamCare, BeGambleAware.org, Gamblers Anonymous and/or other programs. They should not only provide players with access to those programs but actively refer players to them should they suspect that you are developing into a problem gambler.
Such casinos must also become a part of the program themselves. Ultimately, this means that they are forbidden from accepting new players who are actively a part of the program or allowing “blocked” players from accessing their accounts until the exclusion period has elapsed.
Find the Safest Canadian Online Casinos Today
Malta Gaming Authority licensed internet casinos are unquestionably some of the safest online casinos that Canadian players can choose to sign up to. You will find a wealth of these online casinos right here at CanadaOnlineCasinos.com.
Don’t hesitate to check out our casino reviews. You can find out if a casino we recommend is MGA licensed straight away with our reviews. If you are looking for a safe, secure and trusted online casino, Malta Gaming Authority licensed ones are the way to go for Canadians.