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Fifth VIXIO Global Regulatory Awards nominations open today

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Fifth VIXIO Global Regulatory Awards nominations open today
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Industry’s only awards dedicated to regulatory and compliance excellence back for in-person showpiece London event with new categories and judges

Nominations for the fifth annual VIXIO Global Regulatory Awards are open from today, with the industry’s most important event recognising excellence in regulation, responsible gambling and compliance back for a gala in-person event on 21st October.

Following last year’s virtual event due to the global pandemic, organisers VIXIO GamblingCompliance are delighted the event is returning to its home of the De Vere Grand Connaught Rooms in London.

There are 20 awards in total with the addition of four new categories, Outstanding Contribution to Safer Gambling, Outstanding Contribution to Sports Betting Integrity, Responsible Gambling Service or Solution Provider of the Year, and Safer Gambling Campaign of the Year.

Three new judges have also been added to a star-studded panel including Richard Flint, former CEO of SkyBet and current board member at Flutter, Jon Duffy, Director of Corporate Assurance and Regulatory Affairs at Genting Casinos UK, and Khalid Ali, CEO, International Betting Integrity Association (IBIA).

Mike Woolfrey, CEO VIXIO, said: “This year’s awards come at a time when the industry is under the regulatory spotlight more than ever with the Covid-19 outbreak seeing digital growth explode, player protection at the forefront of the news agenda, and multiple markets either opening their doors to online activity or making sweeping regulatory changes that will impact our industry for years to come.

“This has meant that compliance professionals have been working harder than ever to deliver safe and responsible products to safeguard global consumers with many teams and individuals successfully leading their organisations through unprecedented times.

“Our awards recognise the incredible contribution compliance professionals make to our industry’s reputation as one of the most innovative, dynamic and, above all, highly regulated in the world. We are expecting to receive some stellar entries in the coming weeks with the standard getting higher every year, and we can’t wait to celebrate with everyone in October.”

Entries for the awards open today 17th May and close on 30th July. The shortlist of finalists will be announced on 1st September with the gala black-tie ceremony on 21st October in partnership with charity sponsor Young Gamers and Gamblers Education Trust (YGAM).

Compliance Updates

Northern Ireland Gambling Amendment Bill Reaches Assembly

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New regulations for the gaming industry in Northern Ireland have been introduced this week in the country’s Assembly, significantly amending the current laws.

The Betting, Gaming, Lotteries and Amusements (Amendment) Bill creates new offences in permitting children to play gaming machines and provides powers to impose a statutory levy on gambling operators.

It establishes a mandatory code of practice for licence holders, broadens the definition of cheating to include attempted cheating, makes gambling contracts enforceable in law and permits bookmakers and bingo clubs to open on Sundays and on Good Friday.

The minimum age for minors to play a gambling machine is now 18 and it will become an offence to invite a person below that age to play. Previously, it was not an offence to permit an under-age person to gamble.

The statutory levy on gambling operators will be employed in a manner similar to the practice in England, where the money raised is used for community projects and treatment of problem gamblers.

An overhaul of online gambling legislation will form a second phase of the changes to Northern Ireland’s gambling scene and will follow after discussions.

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Compliance Updates

OKTO receives PCI DSS certification

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OKTO receives PCI DSS certification
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Confirming once again OKTO’s commitment to deliver high-quality, reliable, secure, and compliant service offerings to its customers, OKTO obtained the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard certification

OKTO has received the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS) certification proving once more its continuous investment in leading and reliable technologies, adhering to high industry technological standards to offer enhanced security on consumer financial data and increased trust in the payment ecosystem. The fintech firm’s OKTO.WALLET solution meets all the requirements set forth as a Level 1 Service Provider, ensuring the security and protection of payment cardholder data.

Compliance validation of the OKTO solution involved the evaluation and confirmation that the security controls and procedures have been properly implemented as per the policies recommended by PCI DSS. According to the requirements formed by the international payment systems, Visa, Mastercard, American Express and other members, all entities that store, process, and ensure the transfer of data to their cardholders must comply with the unified PCI Data Security Standard.

John Zacharakis, CTO at OKTO, comments: “PCI DSS certification is a key step of our high-quality offering to our customers and commitment to the industry’s highest standards in the most regulated markets. OKTO meets the objectives of the PCI DSS and assures that its clients obtain a fully PCI DSS compliant services, adhering to high security technical standards which ensure the security of the network infrastructure, and apply required controls around cardholder data to minimize credit card fraud.”

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Compliance Updates

1400 Arrests, $8M Seized in Illegal Gambling at Euro: Interpol

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An Interpol operation targeting illegal gambling during Euro 2020 led to 1400 arrests and the seizure of $7.9 million (6.7 million euros) in cash, the Lyon-based global crime agency reported.

Thousands of raids in Asia and Europe also resulted in the confiscation of computers and mobile phones connected to almost $465 million in bets.

“While most of us were watching the UEFA European Football Championship as simple fans, hundreds of specialized officers across 28 countries were targeting organized crime groups looking to earn millions from illegal gambling and related money laundering activities,” an Interpol statement read.

Hong Kong police detained more than 800 suspects, “including the alleged kingpin of a triad-controlled bookmaking syndicate,” the statement said.

In what was described as one of Hong Kong’s most successful operations ever they seized $2.7 million in cash and records detailing hundreds of millions in bets.

In Italy, home of the European champions at the pandemic-delayed tournament, Operation SOGA VIII inspected 280 betting shops and delivered 1.3 million euros in sanctions for illegal betting schemes.

In all, Interpol’s eight SOGA operations have led to more than 19,000 arrests, cash seizures of more than $63 million and the closure of over 4000 illegal betting dens.

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