Whenever you do anything online that involves providing personal and financial information, you want to know how your data is handled and that it is done so securely. This is particularly true for players at online casinos, seeing as you could have large sums of money stored in your account at any one time.
We’ve covered everything you need to know about privacy and security at online casinos so that you’re fully clued in about how your details and finances are handled. Let’s take a look at how you can identify secure casinos, how your funds are protected and some helpful tips that can help stay safe online.
How to verify if an operator is secure
Playing with secure casino operators is the only way to be sure that your account is secure and your privacy is handled in the correct way. Here’s how you can identify trusted operators.
The first thing you need to know about casino security is the importance of only playing at licensed sites. In the UK, all online gambling operators require a UK Gambling Commission in order to legally offer gambling services. The UKGC regulates all aspects of all the gambling industry, and operators must meet the licence conditions and codes of practice (LCCP) set out by the UKGC in order to be granted and maintain a licence.
The LCCP clearly set out the standards online casinos and other gambling sites must meet when it comes to privacy and security. This includes using industry standard data encryption and having security systems that are tested by independent accredited agencies, such as eCOGRA to ensure player safety.
If casinos fall short of these standards, they can be penalised by the UKGC and stripped of their license. So to guarantee you’re playing with a secure operator that will offer the appropriate protection, making sure you only use UK licensed casinos.
Another way in which you can verify an online gambling site is secure is by checking for the padlock symbol in the URL search bar. The padlock is used to signify websites that have a Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) properly installed. This ensures that the online casino is operating on a secure network connection, rather than an unsecure connection which is more vulnerable to potential hackers.
It’s important to remember that playing at a secure connection doesn’t necessarily guarantee you safety if you’re not playing at a licensed casino site. Think of this more as a way to verify that a licensed casino is operating on a secure connection and hasn’t had its security systems breach, which is always unlikely when playing at licensed operators.
How operators store and handle your personal data
- What personal information the casino collects
- >How and why it collects data,
- Its cookies policy
- When it shares your personal information
- Who it shares your data with
- How long the casino will store your data for
The data casinos collect can range from your account details and financial information to data about the device you play on, your gaming patterns and your social network information if you sign up through a social account.
There are a number of reasons as to why casinos collect this data, such as for making relevant marketing activity and promotions, helping prevent crime, identifying potential and problem gamblers and to improve their services. Casinos also collect data from third parties, such as your credit history, to help in verifying identity and financial information.
Cookies are text files that contain information about you and your mobile or computer device used to provide information to websites. There are several different types. For example, there are strictly necessary cookies that identify you as being logged into a casino website and making sure you connect to the right country website. Other cookies are used by websites to help improve their performance, such as by allowing casinos to target users with adverts based on their activity when using the casino services.
As a consumer, you have the right to request information about any personal data casino operators hold about you and details of who the data is shared with. You can request that data be amended if you believe it is inaccurate, and you also have the right to request the company erase your data in accordance with data protection laws such as General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
How operators store and handle your funds
Licenced gambling sites are required to hold customers’ funds in separate client bank accounts. This ensures that players’ funds are kept separate to the money online casinos earn and spend. This is a licencing requirement set out by the UKGC.
Under UKGC policy, casinos can choose to offer three levels of protection to player funds. These are:
Not protected – There is no arrangement for money to be paid to players if the company were to go bust.
Medium protection – The casino has arrangements, such as insurance, to ensure players’ funds are given back to customers if the company goes bust. However, this is not an absolute guarantee that all funds will be repaid in the event of insolvency.
High protection – Players’ funds are held in an account that is legally and practically separate from the rest of the company and controlled by an independent person or external auditor.
Most established online casinos protect funds according to the medium level set out by the UKGC, but ultimately it’s up to each operator to choose their level. We’d advise checking the level of protection afforded before signing up, particularly if you plan on depositing large amounts of money.
Tips for staying safe at online casinos
Licenced casino sites protect your account in line with the high security standards set out by the UKGC,, but there are also some steps you can take to ensure you stay as safe as possible.
- Use a strong password
Using a strong password that uses uppercase letters, numbers and special symbols can greatly reduce the risk of hackers being able to fraudulently access your account.
- Use 2FA and fingerprint ID
Activating two-factor authentication means that you’ll be sent a unique code every time you log in for an added layer of security. If you’re playing on a casino app, you can activate fingerprint identification for more secure logins.
- Only play on secure networks and devices
We’d recommend against signing into your casino account and depositing funds on public WiFi networks and shared devices.
- Beware of phishing
Scammers and fraudsters have been known to try to trick casino players into handing over their passwords and financial information by posing as online casinos in emails and texts. Your casino will never ask for information in this way, so you should be sure to ignore phishing emails and never follow links or provide any details.
No. Although casino privacy policies generally cover the same things, they are independent of each online casino and should be read before you sign up.
How can I contact my casino if I have questions about my privacy and security?
Do online casinos share my data with third-parties?
What happens if I don’t share my data?
Refusal to share the required data will likely result in your chosen casino either not offering any of its services or operating an extremely restricted service. For example, if you sign up but then fail to provide identity verification documents requested by the casino, your account may be locked. Similarly, if you provide your data but then request it be erased, this may also limit the casino’s ability to provide its services to you.