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Convention Looks to Ensure Online Casinos are Fair

 Many online casinos industry leaders yesterday called out to the major online casinos at the Montreal, Canada online casinos convention and urged those online casinos to ban cheaters, restrict underage gamblers, and ensure fair gaming if online casinos want to lose their shady reputation. Industry leaders said that online casinos have a shady reputation because gamblers online look at online casinos as places that are easily susceptible to cheating and fraud as well as even credit card problems. After online casinos “clean up their act,” so to speak, then will online casinos be seen as a pillar in the commerce business of the world wide web, according to Andre Beveridge, the chief executive of the online casinos watchdog organization Ecogra. Beveridge made his claim for safer online casinos at the Montreal convention for online casinos leaders at the Palais de Cognres.

About the online casinos industry, Beveridge said, "The entire industry is not pulling together to address these issues."
76 online casinos among hundreds carry the eCOGRA seal of approval, which ensures the games are random, payout percentages are fair and money transfers are secure. "Players want to know their money is safe, and that they'll get their cash if they win," said Ted Loh of Orient Gaming, an Asian gambling consultancy. "There's the real fear they'll be cheated by the sites and by other players online." ECOGRA (e-Commerce and Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance) was born out of player concern for this unregulated and not all together legal industry, Beveridge said. Some jurisdictions that allow online gambling, like Kahnawake, Curacao and the Isle of Man, have their own regulations, but "how strongly they're enforced is questionable," the chief executive officer said.
He added, "Joining eCOGRA is a financial investment. But so many casinos are making so much money that this is not a priority for them. But it's a short-sighted attitude."
A Harris Interactive poll in February showed that 76 per cent of U.S. adults felt online gambling was unsafe, an attitude casinos want to change.
Internet poker rooms, gaming veteran Roy Cookes said, need to show players that there is no collusion between cardholders.
It's easy, for instance, for one person to be posing as two players by playing on two computers at once.
"We also have the moral obligation to assist gambling addicts, said Cookes, a columnist for Card Player magazine. "We can't be like Las Vegas casinos, who send problem gamblers a limo."
While there is software that can detect suspicious and abusive behaviour, there is no unstoppable method that has been proven to work almost every time, Beveridge said. "We're still learning a lot in this area," the chief executive officer said. Gambling on the internet is a $12 billion market that is expected to double in four years. Montreal has hosted the Global Interactive Gaming Summit and Expo for the past six years running. The convention brings together casinos, gambling havens, software developers and solutions providers.

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