Tuesday, July 08, 2008

France´s Online Gaming Commission Devises New Laws To Combat Online Poker Cheats

France has made a wise decision to allow controlled and regulated access to its market by online casino operators, and has come up with model standards to address concerns as the gambling sites slowly are permitted to reach French citizens.

The president of the French National Crime Commission, Alain Bauer, devised a list of important steps to observe as the market is gradually opened. The problems foreseen by opponents of online gambling are covered, with measures included to limit potential damage.

France will create a regulatory agency, responsible for monitoring and licensing applicants for legal online gambling. Servers will need to be accessible to this agency, so that software and records can be audited and monitored for fraud or cheating.

Only online casinos with a history of seven or more years will be allowed to apply.

Full disclosure and transparency will be required of all online gambling sites, including investors and shareholders as well as employees passing background checks.

Player registration would involve submission of a legal form of identification, including a French bank account, and issuing of a distinct PIN for activation and play.

Sharing of information, such as suspicious sports betting patterns, with the government is demanded, as well as regulation similar to that against insider trading to prevent wagering by sources with team or player connections.

A system to detect and block gamblers identified as problem gamblers must be in place.

The steps that France has carefully considered appear to do an excellent job of protecting their citizenry, far better than a ban leaving online gambling to uncontrolled entities. Maybe the United States could take a lesson.