In the latest edition of SBC Leaders, Michael Tobin, CEO and Founder at Continent 8 Technologies, addressed new markets, new cyber threats and new technologies as he looked back on the company’s 25 years of providing reliable innovation to the industry.

The pace at which regulated online gambling continues to roll out across the globe is tremendously exciting and presents huge opportunities for operators and suppliers to explore. North America often dominates the conversation followed closely by Latin America. 

These are game-changing markets for sure, and here at Continent 8 Technologies we have taken an ambitious first-to-market approach to both regions to ensure that our customers can go live from day one and capitalise on the upsides this offers. 

To do this, we work closely with state and provincial regulators to help shape their guidelines and to ensure our products and solutions are fully compliant with requirements. Today, we are live in 28 states and counting, and support 85 per cent of operators on the 2023 EGR Power US Rankings. 

But we are just as committed to driving growth in established jurisdictions such as Europe, where we have been supporting businesses in the EMEA igaming market for more than two decades. This has seen us recently open a site in Croatia, providing a bespoke cloud solution for a longstanding customer of ours. 

This is only possible because of our 25 years of experience in delivering innovative yet reliable infrastructure solutions covering managed hosting, connectivity, cloud and security. 

We have come a long way since the business was founded back in 1998 with a simple mission to provide the infrastructure the early pioneers of online gambling needed to build their businesses from the ground up. 

From a small, original data centre 25 years ago, some of the world’s biggest poker companies emerged, growing from start-ups to billion-dollar brands in a matter of years. 

This was a catalyst for other online gambling businesses to emerge, and we have supported hundreds of operators and suppliers since. 

To do this, we have had to keep pace with the rapid roll-out of regulation and licensing. There really is no other infrastructure provider that is as experienced as Continent 8 when it comes to working with regulators and deploying infrastructure in line with the requirements set in individual markets. 

Combatting criminals

Another big change the sector has seen in the last two-and-a-half decades is the increasing threat posed by cyber criminals. 

The industry is one of the most attacked, and operators and suppliers must ensure they have the right solutions in place to be able to protect their data and systems in the event they are targeted. For most, this is now a case of when they will be attacked and not if. 

To ensure resilience, we recommend taking a multi-layered approach covering DDoS and WAAP protection as well as MDR/EDR and SIEM/SOC solutions. This needs to be combined with a comprehensive cybersecurity policy as well as regular staff training and education. 

As the volume and complexity of cyber attacks have evolved, so too has our suite of Secure solutions – again, this has seen Continent 8 become the go-to security partner for both operators and suppliers in markets and industries across the world. 

Staying ahead of the game

Innovation is a driver of progress and growth in all industries, but when you look back at how far the sector has come it is clear that it is one where pushing boundaries is hard-wired into those that operate in it. 

At Continent 8, we are proud to have delivered reliable infrastructure innovation to our customers whether that be our Public and Private Clouds, or our unique Gaming Exchange and Premium Portal that allows our customers to connect directly over a private, secure internet and send, track and analyse data in real-time. 

We are always looking to bring new products and solutions to the market and are launching a Cloud CDN and Object Storage offering in the coming months. This will allow our customers to reduce bandwidth costs, store data closer to either the customer, partner or consumer, and therefore deliver faster applications and web experiences with reduced latency. 

Cloud CDN specifically provides better video on demand and streaming capabilities, and we are obviously bringing those capabilities where the industry needs them the most.

The change the industry has seen over the last 25 years is remarkable to say the least, and at Continent 8 we are dedicated to supporting the sector over the next two-and-a-half decades and beyond.