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APPROVED TESTING AGENCY

ECOGRA CEO CALLS FOR SOFTWARE PROVIDERS TO JOIN IN GIVING GREATER PLAYER ASSURANCE

Senior eCOGRA personalities met with software providers yesterday in an open session in Toronto, Canada designed to explain the regulatory requirements of the player protection body.

Most online gambling executives are currently in the city attending the Global Interactive Gaming Summit and Expo which ends Wednesday.

The chairman of eCOGRA, Michael Hirst OBE, independent director and respected online gambling consultant Frank Catania, CEO Andrew Beveridge and Fair Gaming Advocate Tex Rees met delegates and gave a presentation covering the progress made by eCOGRA, highlighting the announcement that day that major casino operator Casino On Net had been awarded the Seal.

C.O.N. CEO John Anderson was in the audience.

In a plea to more online gaming system software suppliers to join, Beveridge said that the unwillingness of certain providers to submit their organizations for rigorous assessement was impeding the industry's fight for recognition in offering reputable and accountable operating standards.

He emphasized that ??eCOGRA is open to all software suppliers and their operators that that share the vision of self-regulation enforced by independent inspection and monitoring. It is an industry initiative which needs to be supported, if the industry is to reach the universal credibility it so rightly seeks?.

He revealed that although eCOGRA did not at present have any plans for the sportsbook sector, it was actively working on appropriate regulations for the booming poker sector. Covering the structure of the organisation, Beveridge emphasised the independent nature of the Seal award process and the benefits it made possible for players and casinos alike.

Beveridge said that the services of eCOGRA`s Fair Gaming Advocate had been successfully called upon by a number of players who had voiced their satisfaction with the fast and efficient resolutions that had been achieved.

The advantages of undergoing a detailed inspection by highly experienced professionals was stressed, together with future plans by eCOGRA to launch substantial awareness and advertising initiatives on the benefits of regulated gambling, and participation in other projects that take advantage of bringing together significant and reputable companies were outlined by Beveridge.

eCOGRA is confident that external organisations such as regulators and financial institutions will increasingly recognise Seal holders for their responsible efforts and compliance with international quality requirements. The continuing education of this aspect remains a priority.

Later in the week eCOGRA will be taking part in open discussion panels at GIGSE.

Issued by: Andrew Beveridge, CEO
Date: 18 May 2004
Website: www.ecogra.org
Telephone: +44 20 7887 1480
Email: pr@ecogra.org




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