The United Kingdom responsible gambling organisation Gamcare has accredited Gibraltar-based online poker site Poker Stars.com, acknowledging that the company has "…achieved high standards in player protection and social responsibility and recognises the need to assist their customers to play responsibly."

GamCare is a registered charity in Britain and a leading authority on information, advice and practical help in addressing the social impact of gambling. In order to achieve that, the organisation develops strategies aimed at:

* Improving the understanding of the social impact of gambling
* Promoting a responsible approach to gambling
* Addressing the needs of those adversely affected by a gambling dependency

In order to achieve GamCare certification, PokerStars.com had to make changes to its site in order to implement the GamCare Code of Practice for Remote Gambling in relation to its online poker service, the company revealed this week.

To achieve certification, PokerStars.com implemented several practices, one of which was an age verification system to ensure that all U.K. players were of legal age to place bets on the site. The poker site also implemented a self-exclusion option for those players who feel they may have a problem and wish to suspend their play for as little as 24 hours or as long as 180 days or more.

Poker Stars has introduced a new deposit limits policy. While there were already limits for new players, now players can set their own, smaller limits should they so desire.

The company has additionally introduced the following elelments to its operations:

* Information about responsible gambling and sources of advice and support

* Training for customer service representatives in problem gambling and social responsibility

* Consultation with GamCare when developing new technologies and products

* Support for the work GamCare carries out in addressing the social impact of gambling

GamCare provides several options for problem gamblers to receive counseling and advice through its National Helpline, counseling service, or email service. It also offers group counseling and NetLine, an online hotline offered to U.K. residents.

PokerStars.com now provides links and information for people to access those services through its GamCare information.