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Austria to tighten online regulation

George Miller



Austria to tighten online regulation
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Internet service providers in Austria could be authorised to block domains of websites that break local laws, such as some international gambling sites.


Internationally licensed online gambling sites have proven to be a pain to deal to several countries without proper regulation for the online segment. In order to improve its control over them, Austria is considering to authorise internet service providers (ISPs) to block the domains of websites presumed to be breaking their laws.

As reported by CalvinAyre, plans to amend the Telecommunications Act 2003 to permit local ISPs to take “traffic management measures” in order to prevent “criminal acts” have been recently revealed by the Ministry of the Interior. Despite not being specifically targetted to gambling sites, the Austrian Association for Betting and Gaming (OVWG) has alerted that they could be included if Austrian legislators approve the amendment.

Government’s intentions aren’t a novelty, however, legal challenges at the Court of Justice for the European Union have interfered with their previous efforts to get ISPs to block unauthorised gambling operators’ domains.

Online gambling verticals (excluding sports betting) are restricted in Austria to the Win2Day brand of Casinos Austria and its Austrian Lotteries subsidiary. The OVWG was created to update the current framework in order to make it more EU-compliant.

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