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Compliance Updates

Ireland Implements Interim Gaming and Lotteries Act

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Ireland Implements Interim Gaming and Lotteries Act
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The new interim Gaming and Lotteries Act in Ireland has come into force, modernising the promotion of gaming and standardising a minimum age of 18 for all gambling products.

The interim Act has been introduced ahead of a more comprehensive overhaul of gambling regulation planned for next year.

James Browne, minister with special responsibility for gambling regulation, said: “This act modernises the Gaming and Lotteries Act 1956 and will help the better promotion of local gaming and lottery activity.

“These activities, held primarily for charitable and philanthropic purposes, are the lifeblood of our sporting clubs and community organisations across the country.”

The new act sets a minimum age limit of 18 for all forms of gambling, including betting on the Tote, which previously had no age limit.

It also aims to streamline and modernise the application process for gaming and lottery permits and for licences to run small-scale, local gaming and lottery activity. It also adds more consumer protection rules to the promotion of gaming products. It also directs more proceeds from lotteries go to charitable causes.

Minister Browne said: “Gambling is a large and evolving industry. It must be the subject of a modern, sensible and effective licensing and regulatory approach.

“My department is now engaged in the drafting of a general scheme of a new bill to provide for that comprehensive reform.”

The changes will not affect end-of-year draws, the minister said. Permits and licences already issued under the 1956 act will remain valid until their next renewal date.

Compliance Updates

Hellenic Gaming Association Intensifies its Efforts to Combat Illegal Online Gambling

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The Hellenic Gaming Association (HGA) has intensified its efforts against the phenomenon of illegal online gambling, which has reached enormous proportions in recent years with incalculable economic and social impacts.

Following a lawsuit recently filed by the organisation under President Christos Panagopoulos against an internationally active company conducting illegal gambling in Greece without the necessary licensing from the Hellenic Gaming Commission (HGC), a new lawsuit targets two well-known Greek influencers. These influencers, through their social media content, promote unlicensed gambling websites.

These internet personalities have posted a series of videos encouraging their mostly young audience, including minors, to visit these sites by sharing how they “managed” to win tens of thousands of euros by betting and playing on these illegal platforms. However, they conceal the fact that these are illegal gambling companies while enticing viewers with the promise of easy money.

It is important to highlight that their audience includes minors, who find an open door in the unlicensed environment where there are no controls or restrictions, unlike legal online companies where one must be at least 21 years old to open an account and play.

Besides the two Greek influencers, the association is planning to file reports to social media platforms and online services hosting ads and promoting unlicensed providers. Initially, they will approach the relevant departments of these organisations, and they may even take the matter to prosecutorial authorities. The initiatives undertaken by the HGA to combat illegal gambling often aim to fill the void left by the State, which is fundamentally responsible for addressing this open wound with appropriate actions, rather than a private entity.

The massive scale of illegal gambling in Greece was confirmed by a recent official survey conducted by the HGC in collaboration with KAPPA Research, shedding light on the hidden side of this illicit activity. According to the survey, 900,000 Greeks, or nearly 1 in 10, participated in illegal gambling at least once in the past 12 months, with an estimated astronomical expenditure of 1.7 billion euros in the unlicensed environment.

Of the total 1.7 billion euros, 1.1 billion was spent on illegal online games, and the remaining 600 million euros were associated with money spent in physical networks, such as unlicensed clubs and casinos. The average annual amount spent per player online reached approximately 1200 euros, while for land-based gambling, the corresponding amount was 738 euros.

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Compliance Updates

Rightlander enhances Soft2Bet’s marketing compliance across multiple jurisdictions

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Rightlander enhances Soft2Bet’s marketing compliance across multiple jurisdictions
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Partnership will strengthen marketing compliance in key markets including Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Romania and Ontario.

Soft2Bet, a leading provider of iGaming turnkey solutions, is pleased to announce a strategic partnership with Rightlander, a leading provider of compliance and monitoring solutions for the iGaming and affiliate marketing industries.

The partnership will strengthen Soft2Bet’s commitment to maintaining the highest standards of marketing compliance across key markets such as Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Romania, Ontario, Greece and Ireland.

Under the terms of the partnership, Rightlander will deploy its advanced compliance monitoring technology to ensure Soft2Bet adheres to affiliate and iGaming marketing regulations in those jurisdictions. Rightlander’s comprehensive suite of services will include website and social media monitoring and will provide Soft2Bet with robust tools to detect and manage compliance risks effectively.

This proactive approach will help identify and rectify any non-compliant content swiftly, ensuring Soft2Bet’s operations remain within regulatory frameworks.

The partnership will concentrate on ensuring compliance in key markets where regulatory scrutiny is particularly stringent. Rightlander’s expertise in these jurisdictions will provide Soft2Bet with the assurance that it is meeting all local regulatory requirements.

Jonathan Elkin, Sales Director, Rightlander, commented on the partnership: “We are thrilled to partner with Soft2Bet, a company that shares our commitment to high compliance standards. Our technology will provide Soft2Bet with the tools needed to navigate complex regulatory environments effectively and maintain their reputation for integrity and trustworthiness.”

David Yatom Hay, General Counsel of Soft2Bet, added: “Ensuring compliance is a core component of our business strategy as we expand into new markets. Partnering with Rightlander gives us confidence that we can uphold these standards across all our operations, delivering a safe and secure experience for our customers.”

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Compliance Updates

eGaming Integrity Launches to Enhance Compliance for OGRA Licence Holders and CSPs

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We proudly announce the official launch of eGaming Integrity, a specialised compliance services provider exclusively dedicated to protecting OGRA licence holders and the CSPs that support them.

Our mission is to enable online gambling operators, and the CSPs that support them, with the tools they need to thrive in the Isle of Man, ensuring integrity, transparency, and adherence to industry standards.

The Isle of Man eGaming sector continues to grow at a rapid pace, with the number of OGRA licensees more than doubling in recent years. With the sector having grown so quickly, it has led to a shortage of highly qualified, well trained, and egaming experienced compliance and AML professionals locally. This skills shortage presents a significant challenge for online gambling operators licensed here.

With our team of industry experts and former regulators, eGaming Integrity enables businesses to remain compliant with the stringent regulatory requirements under the Isle of Man licence through our tailored services which include mock audits, remediation, and internal audits.

Speaking about the requirement for such services, Emma Shilling, eGaming Integrity director said “licensed online gambling operators and local Corporate Service Providers have been looking for a credible provider to offer specialist services beyond day-to-day compliance. We’ve already helped several CSPs navigate the sector in previous roles, where eGaming isn’t always the primary area of expertise so businesses have sought our experience and industry knowledge to help them service their clients more effectively.”

Fellow director, Nick Bowden added “our in-depth evaluations prepare operators for regulatory visits, remediation support to bring businesses back into good standing with the regulator, and independent assurance makes sure risk management, governance and internal control processes are operating effectively.

eGaming Integrity are now working with a number of OGRA licence holders and local CSPs, providing customised compliance and regulatory advisory services that align with business objectives and operational intricacies.

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