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Compliance Updates

UK’s Gambling Commission publishes tougher ad rules

Niji Narayan

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The UK’s Gambling Commission has released a new set of updated rules regarding advertising, which are more stringent and tougher than the older set of rules. The commission said that the new set of rules “provide stronger protection for consumers and ensure they are treated fairly by gambling businesses.”

The new rules are set to come into effect from October 31 this year. The new rules empower the commission to sanction operators who break advertising rules and even impose fines.

Gambling companies will also face action for advertising failings by third-party affiliates, while the commission can also punish operators that send “spam” marketing emails or texts.

The commission also said the new rules will make it quicker and easier to react to breaches of consumer law, such as unfair and misleading practices.

In addition, companies will now have access to an improved complaints process, which will include an eight-week deadline to resolve such issues.

The move comes after the commission last month urged the UK industry to “step up” in order to help the regulator improve standards across the sector.

Neil McArthur, chief executive of the Gambling Commission, said that the latest changes “will protect consumers from irresponsible advertising and misleading promotions, ensure that they can withdraw their money more easily, and will mean that firms have to deal with complaints more swiftly”.

Responding to today’s announcement, Clive Hawkswood, chief executive of the Remote Gambling Association (RGA), told iGamingBusiness.com that while it is too early to assess the overall impact of the new requirements as a package, “none of these changes should come as a surprise to anyone.”

Hawkswood added: “The industry has already acknowledged the need for improvement in some of the key areas such as complaints-handling and the flaws previously identified by the Competition and Market Authority (CMA).”

Hawkswood also told iGamingBusiness.com that although the RGA initially raised concerns about using regulatory powers to underpin the voluntary regulation system for campaigns overseen by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), it shares the commission’s objective of “maximising compliance through improved guidance and transparency.”

He added: “There are many in the industry who continue to have reservations about the subjectivity that is inherent in many of the ASA’s rulings – for example, in determining what might be considered to be advertising that is ‘of particular appeal to children’ – but we are already working with them to get a better understanding of the decision-making processes.”

Niji Narayan has been in the writing industry for well over a decade or so. He prides himself as one of the few survivors left in the world who have actually mastered the impossible art of copy editing. Niji graduated in Physics and obtained his Master’s degree in Communication and Journalism. He has always interested in sports writing and travel writing. He has written for numerous websites and his in-depth analytical articles top sports magazines like Cricket Today and Sports Today. He reports gaming industry headlines from all around the globe.

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Compliance Updates

PGCB Imposes Fine Totalling US$242k on Two Casino Operators

Niji Narayan

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PGCB Imposes Fine Totalling US$242k on Two Casino Operators
Photo Source: pennsylvaniacasinos.com
Reading Time: 1 minute

 

The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) has imposed the fines totalling US$242k against two casino operators.

Sands Bethworks Gaming, LLC, operator of the Sands Casino Resort in Northampton County, received separate fines of US$120k for underage gaming violations and a second for US$110k regarding the awarding of free slot play. The fine stemmed from 11 incidents in which individuals under the age of 21 accessed the gaming floor.

The second fine was issued for permitting the issuance of free slot play by employees who were not authorised to do so and/or issuing free slot play of amounts above authorised levels.

Washington Trotting Association, LLC, operator of the Meadows Racetrack and Casino in Washington County, received a US$12.5k fine for an underage gaming violation. This fine stemmed from an 18-year-old male gaining access onto the gaming floor, wagering at table games and being served alcohol.

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Latvian Parliament Approves the Amendments to the National Legislation on Gambling

Niji Narayan

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Latvian Parliament Approves the Amendments to the National Legislation on Gambling
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The Latvian parliament has passed the amendments to the national legislation on gambling. The new rules prohibit the Latvians from gambling on the websites of unlicensed international online gambling operators.

Latvian citizens who used the services of unlicensed gambling casinos will get a fine of up to € 350 per incident. Players who avoid taxes for winnings can also be fined. It is assumed that the fine will be 23% for any amount of winnings over € 3,000. There is a €20 thousand penalty for Internet providers who fail to report information about the cases of illegal online gambling.

The Latvian Inspection on lotteries and gambling has blacklisted more than 1500 gaming domains, however, according to media reports, Internet providers blocked only a third of domains form the blacklist.

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Compliance Updates

Spillemyndigheden Issues Warning on Marketing Bonus Offers

Niji Narayan

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Spillemyndigheden Issues Warning on Marketing Bonus Offers
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The Danish Gambling Authority, Spillemyndigheden, has released a statement and issued warning to the operators.

The regulator assessed that the use of the word “free” when marketing a bonus offer is misleading if a wagering requirement is attached to the offer.

In accordance with the Consumer Ombudsman, in 2016, a statement contemplated the use of the word “free” in bonus offers. “The Consumer Ombudsman found that the chance of winning a win was impaired because consumers could not raise their winnings if they stopped the game before the wagering requirement was met, and the total sum of consumer deposits and winnings was higher than the consumer’s initially deposited amount,” said the statement.

The gambling authority said that this is similar to other concepts such as “free spins” and “free bet” if a turnover requirement is attached to the offer. “The use of these terms can create an expectation on the part of the consumer that the offer is actually free without any limitations and will therefore be contrary to the law if this is not the case,” said the watchdog.

 

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