Player disputes filed online with eCOGRA in respect of "Fair and Safe" accredited online casinos and poker rooms were low for the first quarter of 2008, with an average of only 0.26 disputes per seal casino being recorded, according to the player protection and standards organisation's Fair Gaming Advocate, Tex Rees.
A total of 171 dispute mediation requests were received during the quarter, well down on the average quarterly figure for 2007 of 195. Of the 2008 disputes lodged in the first quarter, 27 were in respect of websites that are not accredited by eCOGRA and were therefore declined. A further 17 ‘disputes' were classed as invalid due to insufficient contact information, abuse, falsehood or the lack of a specific complaint.
"Unfortunately, the quarter has been marred by a relatively large number of false bonus abuse complaints lodged by fraudulent players, which when investigated in depth were found to be invalid due to multiple accounts, bonus over-claiming and in a minority of cases out-and-out fraud," Rees revealed, adding that 34, or 27 percent of disputes she handled were related to bonus issues.
Of the 127 valid disputes, 44 percent were resolved in favour of the player, Rees reported, saying she handled an average of 10.6 valid disputes per week over the quarter.
"The main cause for complaint was Cash In related matters, which generated 61 disputes, or 48 percent of the total disputes received," she commented. "Bonus issues constituted 27 percent of the disputes, followed by locked account issues at 17 percent and miscellaneous complaints at 8 percent."