Online casinos do their utmost to keep their products fair and safe. They refer to independent game testing companies to get their products audited by specialists. The verification certificate will be the best proof of fairness and safety to online players.
How much do you know about independent tests and testing companies? Can all of them be trusted? Let’s try to answer these questions.
What Testing Companies Do?
Independent testing companies started appearing in the gaming industry not long after the inception of online casinos. Some of them managed to stand the test of time by making a name for themselves. Their common mission is to conduct an online casino test and to verify that an online casino complies with the gambling regulator’s rules. This needs to be done as a precaution against any possible scam or fraud.
Each testing laboratory has seals of approval which involve various criteria, from the integrity of the Random Number Generator to the presence of responsive customer support. There are not many testing laboratories that operate in the online gambling industry. Below, you will find the major ones.
The eCommerce Gaming Regulation and Assurance (eCOGRA) is one of the most respected testing companies in the UK. Since 2003, it has become a synonym for fairness. It even has been awarded the United Kingdom Accreditation Service’s (UKAS) ISO accreditation, which strengthened the company’s reputation on the market.
eCOGRA provides regulatory compliance to online casinos in regulated markets, such as Croatia, Portugal, Czech Republic, and Bulgaria. Generally, it has accreditation in 27 jurisdictions across the world. It hasn’t had an application for accreditation rejected by a national regulator so far.
eCOGRA has two types of seals. Here they are:
- The Safe and Fair Seal is awarded to online gambling operators that fully correspond to the eCOGRA General Accepted Practice (GAP) requirements. These include a focus on fair gaming, proper attitude to customers, and strong safety measures.
- The Certified Software Seal is awarded to online software providers that fully correspond to the eCOGRA General Accepted Practice (GAP) requirements. These include a focus on the security protocols and the development plans.
iTech Labs is a world-class certification agency in Australia. It was founded in 2004. It received accreditation to test according to UKGC Remote Technical Standards in 2014. Since then, it has focused on testing casino fairness and poker games in many jurisdictions across the world. It is regularly called upon by experienced and new online casino operators licensed under the UK Gambling Commission, the Malta Gaming Authority, Denmark, Spain, Gibraltar, and many others. The only gambling regulator that is not covered by the company is Curacao.
In terms of casino fairness, iTech Labs supports several quality assurance services, such as functionality testing, multilingual testing, and integration testing. In terms of poker games, iTech Labs conduct audits for multi-player and single-player tournaments, ring games, and jackpot games. Meanwhile, table games, card games, and slots fall under the company’s casino system audits.
Technical Systems Testing (TST) appeared on the market in 1993, which makes it one of the oldest testing labs in the world. Despite having been merged with GLI in 2010, TST keeps operating under its own brand. The company has representatives in different parts of the world, including Manilla, Macau Vancouver, and London.
TST offers testing and consultation services to both online and land-based gaming operators. Its mission is to test the systems to make sure that they meet the regulatory standards of the region they are located in. TST provides iGaming compliance testing services for the following internet systems:
- Random Number Generator (RNG)
- Game and mathematics
- Live dealer, sportsbook, or betting exchange
- Lottery and pari-mutuel system
- Poker system etc.
Gaming Laboratories International (GLI) is an American testing and auditing agency, founded in 1989. It received full accreditation from the UKGC in 2008. By now, the company has tested more than 1.7 million products in more than 480 jurisdictions.
GLI made its first step from obtaining a machine-testing contract with the state of South Dakota that planned to implement the first American video lottery. Eventually, the company started its expansion to Australia and Europe.
Being one of the oldest testing laboratories on the market, GLI has tested almost every product present in the online gaming industry today. These include live dealer games, table games, slot machines, sportsbooks, poker rooms, online casinos, and so on.
Gaming Associates (GA) is a Swedish testing company that certifies online gaming systems. Being accredited by SWEDAC, it can deliver a full range of testing services to both land-based and online gambling companies. Since the early 1990s, it has expanded its operations in several European jurisdictions, the United States, South America, Asia, and Australia.
Gaming Associates offers testing and auditing services for the product’s compliance and randomness with regulations. It also monitors player logs for several leading online poker rooms to efficiently protect users and ensure each game is fair. The company can assess a gaming environment by checking games, Random Number Generator, platform administration, security policies integrated, and so on.
NMi is a European company that has been on the market since the 1970s. It is accredited by several accreditation institutions from the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation (ILAC). The company’s mission is to assist online operators in meeting their certification requirements.
NMi established laboratories in many countries across the world, including the UK, Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands. In 2007, it started performing online casino tests on a wide range of products, including table games and slot machines.
BMM Testlabs is a testing agency that has been established in 1981. Today, the company has 14 offices in 13 different countries. Its headquarters are situated in the United States.
BMM Testlabs provides testing as well as regulatory consultancy to gambling companies. Its services are adjusted to the various needs of both the land-based and online gambling products. BMM Testlabs’ operations can be split into two stages – Pre-compliance and Ongoing Live Operations. At the Pre-compliance stage, the company uses the RNG algorithm to test a casino site’s functionalities. At the stage of Ongoing Live Operations, the company conducts quarterly audits, writes compliance reviews, and provides support services.
Software Quality Systems (SQS) is a German company that deals with various software products. It aims to improve their quality through consultancy services. Having been on the market since 1982, SQS managed to expand its operations throughout the world. Today, it provides support to some of the world’s largest brands like Volkswagen and Deutsche Post.
Gaming is one of the spheres covered by SQS. Testing games is one of SQS’s tasks. The company ensures that real money games operate in accordance with quality, fairness, and regulatory standards.
Why Trust Testing Companies?
eCOGRA, BMM Testlabs, and other testing companies have years of successful work behind. They operate from the countries with reliable law enforcement systems. Any cheating with tests will automatically lead to legal problems. So, providing accurate information to the gaming audience is in their best interest.