About the Danish Gambling Authority
The Danish Gambling Authority (DGA) issues licenses for online casinos. The Danish authority is an independent regulator set up by the Ministry of Taxation. They aim to ensure that the gambling market in Denmark is regulated to prevent illegal gambling activity. This means that all gambling activity in Denmark is administered by the Danish Gambling Authority. Which includes online casinos, lotteries, land-based casinos, and slot machines.
After approving licenses, the DGA monitors online casino operators to ensure compliance with the legislation and take steps to ensure responsible gambling for players. The Danish Gambling Authority also offers advice to organizations and members of the public about gambling and the industry. It has a comprehensive website that guides every aspect of the application process.
History of the Danish Gambling Authority
The Danish Ministry of Taxation formed the Danish Gambling Authority in 2000. For the first ten years, the main role of the authority was to oversee the use of gambling machines such as slot machines. These were in various locations around the country, such as arcades, restaurants, pubs, and kiosks. Over time, Denmark’s gambling authority and the Danish government have developed various legislation covering all types of gambling, from online to land-based casinos.
The Danish Gambling Authority also took responsibility for the supervision of land-based casinos. At the time, there were seven of these in the country. Another aspect of gambling that immediately came under the authority's remit was the Danske Spil, which until this point had the sole responsibility for running the lottery and other betting services. Its monopoly on lotteries has continued but could change in the future.
Independent from government
The Danish Gambling Authority was able to begin issuing licenses to bingo providers and charity lottery operators. This helped to widen the market for newer providers. In 2012, the current Gambling Act came into effect in Denmark, and the Authority was able to begin issuing licenses to operators. This has not always been the case as the state had a big hand in gambling activities for many years in the country. Local licenses were not easy to obtain for international operators. This impeded the growth of the market in the country for many years as there was very little competition.
In 2013, the Authority became independent from the government, and a director was appointed. The change took place on 1 January 2013. Since then, the authority has gone from strength to strength and oversees the industry with its regulatory powers.
This has not always been the case as the state had a big hand in gambling activities for many years in the country. Local licenses were not easy to obtain for international operators. This impeded the growth of the market in the country for many years as there was very little competition.
Online casinos licensed by Danish Gambling Authority
Any online casino with an approved license by the Danish Gambling Authority will be able to offer a specific range of games. It includes standard casino games such as poker and blackjack. However, there is still a restriction on sports betting, and the lottery, as the Danske Spil still has a monopoly on these. Licenses can be issued for online casinos providing they offer games that require skills and strategy games such as backgammon.
It is still the case that gaming arcades and casinos are the most popular option for gambling. The Gambling Act makes it a legal requirement for an organization to apply for a license before they can operate their gambling services. To date, the Danish Gambling Authority has issued more than 25 licenses. These have been issued to both Danish organisations and operators from other countries.
Casinos with a Danish license
The Danish Gambling Authority has already approved several online casinos. These include the following:
- 888 Denmark – known to most players as 888Casino.
- Mr Green – is popular for its range of slot games.
- Unibet – one of the longest established online casinos.
These are the casino companies that have been through the lengthy process of applying for a license, passed all the relevant checks, and have paid the fees in Denmark. Some of the most famous online casinos have been successful in applying for a license and have begun to establish themselves within the gambling industry in Denmark. As part of the EU, Denmark has to comply with European-wide legislation and has developed its own legislation to allow it to meet its obligations.
Applying for the license
The first step is to take a look at the details on the website of the Danish Gambling Authority. Some steps must be followed by anyone who wants to run an online casino in Denmark. It is not possible to simply fill out a form and get a license. Operators must meet several criteria, including providing online services in Danish, paying the relevant fees, being prepared for inspections and audits, and ensuring that they comply with the current gambling legislation at all times.
An example of one of the criteria is that the operator must give the Danish Gambling Authority access to the data warehouse that must be used to keep the player’s personal information safe.
The pros and cons of applying to the Danish Gambling Authority
There are many advantages to applying for a license from the Danish Gambling Authority:
- The Authority oversees the regulation of the industry and is keen to stay up to date with the technological advances in the industry.
- The Authority offers advice to both the operator and the user, offering support to help each side to use the services safely.
- The Authority focuses on promoting services for Danish people in the Danish language.
- Measures are taken to prevent illegal gambling services from being promoted in the country.
There are also several disadvantages to applying for the relevant gambling licenses from the Danish Gambling Authority:
- The cost of applying for the license is substantial. Companies that want to invest in the Danish gambling sector need to be prepared to pay additional monies to the Danish government. This process means that it is difficult for just anyone to set up an online casino.
- Licences are not issued indefinitely and must be renewed every five years, with further costs involved.
- Despite the Europe-wide legislation that guides the Danish authorities, companies that are successful in applying for a license in Denmark will not be able to use this to set up casinos in other countries. They will need to make applications in each country where they want to operate.
Domestic Laws and Restrictions set by Danish Gambling Authority
Different pieces of legislation apply to different areas of gambling in Denmark. The Danish Gambling Authority can provide copies of the most up-to-date versions of the legislation to companies and individuals that require them.
The main piece of legislation is the Danish Gambling Act, which is also known as the Consolidation Act no. 1303. This covers all gambling activities.
For online casinos, the next piece of legislation that is important is Executive Order no 1274. For casinos that also offer sports betting, Executive Order no 1276 will also be required.
Companies are also affected by other legislation when they run an online casino. One of these is the Anti-Money Laundering Act, which is also known as the Consolidation Act no. 316. In connection with this, Executive Order no. 727 details the games that are exempt from the Anti-Money Laundering Act.
The Danish Gambling Authority was established under Executive Order no 1121. It produces its own guidance to the legislation. Companies should check the individual categories of gambling to get the guidance that is relevant to them.
About the author
Liam O'Sullivan, an Irish digital maestro, seamlessly fuses his impeccable command of English with an enthusiastic penchant for online gaming. Highly regarded for his localization expertise, Liam fine-tunes online casino guides, ensuring they resonate profoundly with the diverse English-speaking populace.