The United Kingdom’s Department for Culture, Media and Sport has announced plans for a big change to its online gambling laws. Any remote gambling operator that wants to offer its services to U.K. customers must now obtain a license from the U.K.'s Gambling Commission.

Previously, operators only needed a license from a country in the European Economic Area.

From Poker News Daily:

In a press release, John Penrose, the Minister for gambling policy and recreation, said:

“The current system for regulating remote gambling doesn’t work. Overseas operators get an unfair advantage over UK based companies, and British consumers who gamble online may have little or no protection depending on where the operator they deal with happens to be based. So our new proposals are an important step to help address concerns about problem gambling and to plug a regulatory gap, ensuring a much more consistent and higher level of protection for those people in the UK who gamble online.

“We will create a level playing field, so all overseas operators will be subject to the same standards and requirements as those based in Britain, as well as being required to inform the Gambling Commission about suspicious betting patterns to help fight illegal activity and corruption in betting.”