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AUSTRAC and VGCCC strengthen partnership through updated MOU

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AUSTRAC and VGCCC strengthen partnership through updated MOU
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AUSTRAC and the Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission (VGCCC) have strengthened their cooperation in the fight against serious financial crime through the signing of an updated Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

The MOU will enable AUSTRAC and VGCCC to share information to protect the community by strengthening the gambling sector against criminal abuse. AUSTRAC also has MOUs with state and territory-based gambling regulators in NSW, QLD and ACT to enable strong partnerships and collaboration.

The VGCCC works with a range of state and federal regulators and agencies to ensure the integrity of Victoria’s gambling and liquor industries.

AUSTRAC CEO Nicole Rose said the MOU is an important step in the fight against financial and serious crime, and it confirms the commitment by both agencies to collaborate and exchange financial intelligence.

“The impact on the community of criminals exploiting the gambling industry to launder the proceeds of serious crime cannot be underestimated. It is critical for AUSTRAC and its state and territory-based regulatory and Government partners to work together to ensure the gambling industry is hardened against misuse by criminals,” Ms Rose said.

Adam Ockwell, VGCCC Executive Director of Compliance, said the updated MOU will provide designated VGCCC staff access to AUSTRAC’s financial intelligence database.

This includes access to financial transaction information and suspicious matter reports from businesses to enable the VGCCC to identify and investigate threats facing the Victorian gambling sector and to refer to and assist law enforcement agencies in investigating criminal activity.

The new agreement takes the existing MOU to the next level and enables better information sharing and cooperative regulatory oversight.

“Having faster access to AUSTRAC’s financial intelligence will strengthen our work in identifying any emerging financial crime issues so we can take appropriate regulatory action, including education measures, to minimise harm, protect the community and ensure the integrity of the gambling industries in Victoria.

“It is an object of the Acts we administer to ensure that gambling activities in Victoria are free from criminal influence and exploitation,” said Mr Ockwell.

Australia

ACMA Blocks More Illegal Gambling Websites

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The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has requested the Australian internet service providers (ISPs) to block more illegal gambling websites, after investigations found these services to be operating in breach of the Interactive Gambling Act 2001.

The latest sites blocked include Richard Casino and Wanted Win.

Website blocking is one of a range of enforcement options to protect Australians against illegal gambling services. This action can be taken if a service is:

  • providing prohibited interactive gambling services to customers in Australia (such as online casinos, online slot machines and services that allow in-play online sports betting)
  • providing an unlicensed regulated interactive gambling service to customers in Australia (such as online betting services that don’t have a valid Australian licence)
  • publishing ads for prohibited interactive gambling services or unlicensed regulated interactive gambling services in Australia.

Since the ACMA made its first blocking request in November 2019, 1,011 illegal gambling and affiliate websites have been blocked. Over 220 illegal services have also pulled out of the Australian market since the ACMA started enforcing illegal offshore gambling rules.

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Australia

The Star Shuts Down EGMs and ETGs at All Three Australian Casinos Due to “System Performance Issues”

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Electronic gaming machines (EGMs) and electronic table games (ETGs) at all three of Star Entertainment Group’s Australian casinos remained offline on Monday following what it describes as “system performance issues” related to the introduction of cashless gaming technology. The machines had gone dark on Saturday evening.

According to information released by the company via an ASX announcement, the issue relates to planned upgrades to The Star’s systems in readiness for the introduction of cashless gaming.

“Certain of The Star’s systems have been disrupted due to system performance issues identified in post-upgrade testing which resulted in the decision to switch off all Electronic Gaming Machines and Electronic Table Games in each of The Star’s three properties from 10:00 pm onwards on 13 July 2024 until the issue is resolved,” Star said.

“The decision was taken by The Star to ensure compliance with relevant regulations, and to maintain the company’s commitment to safer gambling procedures.”

Star explained that it is working with its systems provider Konami to address the issues but said its properties – Treasury Brisbane, The Star Gold Coast and The Star Sydney – remain open with table games still operational.

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Australia

Sportradar Secures First Pitch at Regulating the Game 2025 in Sydney

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Sportradar is participating at the Regulating the Game conference, and has secured the first pitch with a quickfire talk on “Effective Regulation Through Innovative Technological Solutions”.

Pitch! is a networking event that as part of the Regulating the Game conference seeks to ignite innovation, champion compliance, and propel the gambling industry “toward unparalleled excellence in regulatory achievements”.

“It is a stage for ideas that elevate operational capability, streamline processes, and confront compliance and regulatory hurdles head-on. More than just a platform, Pitch! is a crucible for change, offering insights into how policy can transition into practice for tangible improvements in regulatory policy and supervision,” the event’s organizers said of the Pitch! feature.

The event shines a spotlight on initiatives that foster ethical leadership, promote safer gambling, and bolster defenses against financial crime and money laundering. As the second networking highlight of the conference, Pitch! combines hospitality, food, and drinks with pitches and entertainment, orchestrated under the guidance of special guest host and sponsor Norths Collective.

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