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Compliance Updates

Joint Competition and Markets Authority / Gambling Commission letter to the gambling sector

George Miller

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Joint Competition and Markets Authority / Gambling Commission letter to the gambling sector
Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

“The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) and Gambling Commission (the Commission) have now concluded their joint programme of work concerning suspected breaches of consumer protection law in the remote gambling sector.

This work focused in particular on the fairness, transparency and potential for consumers to be misled by a number of terms and practices relating to online bonus promotions, and on obstacles preventing withdrawal of customer funds.

The CMA’s work with the Commission has resulted in significant changes by the sector. Six gambling firms provided undertakings to the CMA: Ladbrokes, William Hill, PT Entertainment, BGO, Jumpman Gaming and Progress Play. Each of these firms committed not to continue or repeat certain practices which the CMA considered were unfair. But the impact of this work has been felt across the entire sector.

Our joint work provided a sharp focus on aspects of online gambling and exposed significant shortcomings within the sector that had undermined consumer trust and confidence. The Commission mandated that all gambling firms would need to comply with the requirements set out in the published undertakings, not just those firms that agreed to them.

The findings from this work, and our expectations of you, have been well publicised, and all gambling firms should, by now, have amended their terms and practices to meet the requirements set out in the undertakings.

However, for you to comply fully with your consumer law and licensing responsibilities, you must go further than simply complying with the published undertakings. You need to audit all your terms and conditions, examine your business systems and practices, embed compliance and, importantly, continually review these to ensure that you maintain high standards of consumer protection in the future.

To be compliant also requires critical scrutiny of the practices of those that you deal with, including affiliates and third-party suppliers of systems, software and call centres, as you are responsible for their actions in accordance with the Commission’s Licence conditions and codes of practice (LCCP).

The updated provisions in LCCP, which came into force on 31 October 2018, mean that the Commission can take swift and firm action if you do not comply with consumer law and ensure that your customers are treated fairly at all stages of the customer journey.

We have seen indications of the wider sector working to make changes to the way in which promotions are constructed and promoted to consumers. Recent figures from the Independent Betting Adjudication Service highlighted a significant reduction in the number of disputes raised by consumers over bonuses and other promotions.

Making changes to promotions and withdrawal practices is an important start, but it is only one aspect of achieving compliance. More needs to be done by the sector to win back consumer trust. The best operators going forward will be those who lead by example, build on the work undertaken by the CMA and treat their customers fairly and responsibly. The Commission will continue to look at how firms treat consumers and the terms and practices that they employ when assessing suitability to hold a gambling licence. As well as undertaking compliance activity, the Commission continues to work to make gambling fairer. For example, the Commission has introduced new rules around ID verification that will allow consumers to collect their winnings without unnecessary delay.

Although the CMA does not intend to take any further action in connection with its investigation, it is not the end of its relationship with the Commission or its interest in the sector. The CMA will continue to work with and support the Commission as it progresses its compliance work, and as it continues to tackle unfair terms and practices to ensure the fair treatment of consumers.  It is important that you learn from the work that we have undertaken and ensure that compliance with consumer law is at the heart of your business model. This is essential for the sector to rebuild and maintain consumer trust.”

Yours faithfully, George Lusty, Senior Director Competition and Markets Authority

Yours faithfully, Paul Hope, Executive Director Gambling Commission

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Compliance Updates

EA Advertises FIFA 21 Microtransactions in Kids’ Magazine

Niji Narayan

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EA Advertises FIFA 21 Microtransactions in Kids’ Magazine
Reading Time: < 1 minute

 

EA has featured an ad for its FIFA Ultimate Team mode in a kids’ magazine.

The magazine, sold in the UK, has a page on the Ultimate Team mode for the upcoming football game FIFA 21. The page is all about the game but the steps mentioned for the mode is what has caught the attention of parents in the UK and other parts of the world. The second step mentions the use of FIFA Points, which can only be obtained by spending real money.

FIFA Points have been in the game for years but parents are not happy that something like this is being advertised in a toy magazine. People on social media are so upset about the advertisement that they have called for a boycott on the upcoming game.

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Compliance Updates

VIXIO GamblingCompliance announces 2020 Global Regulatory Awards shortlist

George Miller

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VIXIO GamblingCompliance announces 2020 Global Regulatory Awards shortlist
Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

VIXIO GamblingCompliance announces 2020 Global Regulatory Awards shortlist

Today, VIXIO GamblingCompliance unveiled the shortlist for their Global Regulatory Awards (GRA).  Now in their fourth year, the VIXIO GRAs recognise and celebrate the achievements of individuals, teams and businesses who have excelled in the field of compliance, corporate social responsibility and responsible gambling over the course of the year.

This year’s shortlist showcases a host of progressive businesses, all who have demonstrated their ability to adapt to an increasingly complex regulatory environment, to innovate, and embrace safer gambling.

Mike Woolfrey, CEO, VIXIO, said “This year has been one of the most competitive years yet, with the judges having to consider hundreds of entries to shortlist finalists across 18 categories. Every year the standard gets higher as the industry moves to an ever-greater culture of compliance. Our judging process is extremely rigorous and the awards are hotly contested, so being shortlisted is a highly significant achievement. Whilst this year we are disappointed we won’t be able to host our black-tie gala dinner, we are looking forward to announcing the winners at our virtual event, which everyone can join to celebrate the industry’s achievements”.

Robert Chvatal, CEO, SAZKA Group, said: “Congratulations to all those shortlisted. The operational excellence, innovation and commitment to drive up standards demonstrated by those shortlisted is a really positive sign for the future of the industry. We are delighted to be partnering with VIXIO GamblingCompliance on these hugely important awards and we look forward to seeing who emerges as winners on 29 October”

Due to on-going safety concerns around COVID-19, this year’s presentation of the 2020 VIXIO Global Regulatory Award winners will take place via an online live stream, broadcast globally on 29, October at 16:00 GMT.  To find out more, including how to register, go to: gamblingcomplianceawards.com

Award for Commitment to Compliance by An Affiliate Company

  • AskGamblers

  • Better Collective

  • Bojoko

  • Gambling.com Group

  • iBet Directory

  • Little Star Media

Award for Outstanding Individual Contribution to Responsible Gambling

  • Amina Norgosanow, Videslots

  • David Caruana, Kindred Group

  • Jon Duffy, Genting Casino UK

  • Stefania Colombo, IGT

Best Regulatory Lawyer or Law Firm of the Year

  • CMS

  • Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

  • Greenberg Traurig, LLP

  • Herzog Fox & Neeman

  • Mishcon de Reya Betting & Gaming Group

  • Pinsent Masons LLP

  • Tommaso di Chio, Kambi

  • WH Partners

Best Regulatory Lawyer or Law Firm of the Year

  • Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP

  • Greenberg Traurig, LLP

  • Paul Hasting LLP

Chief Compliance Officer of the Year

  • Jon Duffy, Genting Casinos UK

  • Ori Monheit, Skywind Group

  • Sissel Weitzhandler, Play’n GO

  • Yurri Shevchuk, Parimatch

Chief Executive Officer of the Year

  • David Briggs, GeoComply

  • Giovanni Garrisi, Stanleybet Group

  • Phil Horne, Scientific Games UK

  • Sergey Portnov, Parimatch

Compliance Innovator or Innovation of the Year

  • BetConstruct

  • Gamalyze, Mindway AI

  • Genesis Global Limited

  • Location Validator App, GeoGuard

  • GiG Comply

  • Stoiximan / Betano Group

Compliance Officer of the Year

  • Adam Torres, San Manuel Tribal Gaming Commission

  • Emma O’Neil, Sky Betting & Gaming

  • Ewout Wierda, VideoSlots

  • Jennifer Aguiar, DraftKings

  • Keith Caruana, Play’n GO

  • Mark Halstead, iSoftBet

Compliance Outstanding Achievement Award

  • iSoftBet

  • Kindred Group

  • Paysafe Group

  • Skywind Group

Award for Commitment to Compliance by An Affiliate Company

  • IGT Compliance Team

  • iSoftBet Compliance Team

  • NOVOMATIC AG Compliance Team

  • Paysafe Group Compliance Team

  • People’s Postcode Lottery Compliance Team

  • Play’n GO Compliance Team

  • Playtech Compliance Team

  • Sky Betting and Gaming Compliance Team

Head of AML/MLRO or AML Team of the Year

  • Anti-Fraud Legal and Compliance Team, Estoril Sol Digital

  • AML Team, Genting Casinos UK

  • Group Compliance Team, Paysafe Group

  • Jonathan Galea, VideoSlots

Head of Regulatory Affairs/Government Relations

  • Jon Duffy, Genting Casinos UK

  • Kimberley Broad, Microgaming

  • Lindsay Slader, GeoComply

  • Malcolm Fleming, People’s Postcode Lottery

  • Martin Lycka, GVC Group

  • Pablo Espuela, Luckia Games

  • Sabine Stoppel, NOVOMATIC AG

In-House Counsel/Legal Team of the Year

  • Andrei Andronic, Playson

  • GVC Group Legal Team

  • Nicole Metzgar-Schall, Sportradar

  • NOVOMATIC AG Legal Team

  • Riva Richard, Pollard Banknote Limited

  • Skywind Group Legal Team

  • William Hill Group Legal Team

In-House Counsel/Legal Team of the Year

  • ECOMMPAY

  • Passport Technology

  • Paysafe Group

  • LexisNexis Risk Solutions

  • Trustly

  • Worldpay

RegTech Provider of the Year

  • GeoComply

  • IDnow

  • iovation

  • SBTech

  • Trulioo

  • w2 Global Data

Responsible Approach to Advertising Award

  • 32 Red / Kindred Group

  • Catena Media

  • NetBet Enterprises

  • Stoiximan / Betano Group

  • William Hill

Rising Star Award

  • Denisa Bialá, Play’n GO

  • Erica Okerberg, Greenberg Traurig, LLP

  • Esther Scheepers, Kindred Group

  • Hayley Doherty, Sky Betting & Gaming

  • Joonas Karhu, Bojoko

  • Melissa Shuba, BMM Testlabs

  • Zlatan Omerspahić, Nsoft

Compliance Lifetime Achievement Special Award

  • To be announced

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Affiliate Industry

Rightlander joins forces with Trustly and Footstock

George Miller

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on

Rightlander joins forces with Trustly and Footstock
Reading Time: < 1 minute

 

  • Supplier to help tier one operators improve affiliate compliance

Rightlander, the ground-breaking compliance platform has signed deals with Trustly and Footstock to help both providers improve affiliate compliance and boost their responsible gambling measures.

Rightlander.com will offer its technology which encompasses a comprehensive range of affiliate compliance tools which include the Automated Compliance Monitor, a PPC Monitor and a Proactive Affiliate Finder.

The Automated Compliance Monitor helps detect non-compliant content across geographies including the United Kingdom, Sweden, Denmark, Australia, and the United States. The monitor flags potential violations such as missing terms and conditions, outdated offers, incorrect marketing assets allowing both Trustly and Footstock partners to remain compliant in different jurisdictions.

The Proactive Affiliate Finder scans millions of web pages every month to identify new and prominent sites and the innovative PPC Monitor identifies harmful ads to stop them from appearing on an operator’s branded keywords.

Vasilije Lekovic, Director of Gaming at Trustly said: “At Trustly, we take responsible gambling very seriously, and it’s great to have a trusted partner like Rightlander that can help us promote it.”

James Copeland, Chief Marketing Officer at Footstock commented “Rightlander are a key component in our ongoing endeavour to ensure Footstock and our growing affiliate network take responsible gambling as seriously as possible. We’ve already benefited from their great software and customer service.”

Nicole Mitton, Head of Customer Success at Rightlander.com, said: “The Rightlander platform makes this processes easy and efficient, and ensures operators and suppliers can be confident that the affiliates they are working with are fully compliant with the rules and regulations they must adhere to.

We are delighted to have joined forces with Trustly and Footstock to help them improve their affiliate compliance initiatives.”

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