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Russia to simplify online sports betting account registration

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Russia to simplify online sports betting account registration
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Russia’s government is helping bookmakers by simplifying the cumbersome online sports betting account registration process.

 

Russia’s Ministry of Finance recently drafted new legislation that would eliminate the current requirement for online betting punters to register online with a centralized payment hub (TSUPIS) and then confirm that registration by physically presenting proof of identity at a land-based betting shop or at the bookmakers’ retail partner.

The draft legislation states that a Russian-licensed online bookmaker “has the right to entrust … the identification of a gambling participant to the center for the recording of online betting of bookmakers or sweepstakes, operating in accordance with the requirements of the Federal Law of December 29 2006 No. 244-FZ.

The move follows a meeting earlier this week between government officials and representatives of Russia’s 14 licensed online bookmakers, who expressed frustration with the two-step registration process.

The bookmakers argued that, in addition to presenting serious obstacles to punters who reside in rural areas far from betting shops or the retail operations of bookies’ payment processing partners, the registration process is infinitely simpler at the many internationally licensed online gambling sites that continue to cater to Russian punters.

The bookmakers urged the government to act quickly to resolve the situation, so that operators can cash in on the expected football betting bonanza from Russia hosting this year’s FIFA World Cup.

In December, Russia approved new banking laws that allowed customers to submit biometric data for facilitating online transactions. However, some Russian betting industry figures dismissed suggestions that this new tool would lead to an influx of new online bettors.

ANONYMOUS PAYMENTS BAN IN THE WORKS

As the Russian government giveth, so doth it taketh away. On Wednesday, the Kommersant media outlet reported that the government is preparing to ban anonymous online payments.

More specifically, the plan is to prohibit the transfer of funds to ‘non-personal electronic means of payment (NESP)’ – electronic wallets, prepaid bank cards, etc. – from anything other than a Russian bank account. The same would go for withdrawals from any NESP source to anything other than a bank account.

The Electronic Money Association estimates that there are currently over 100m active e-wallets and prepaid cards in Russia, and customers are able to transfer up to RUB 15k (US$267) in any single transaction.

As ever, the justification for such restrictions are combatting terrorism and other illegal activity, but it fits the pattern of Russia’s general mistrust of any online activity over which the government doesn’t wield absolute control.

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PushFar and Limit Break team up to improve diversity in gaming industry

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PushFar and Limit Break team up to improve diversity in gaming industry
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PushFar, a mentoring and career progression platform, has partnered with Limit Break, a mentorship program in the games industry, to help improve diversity, inclusion and equality.

Limit Break is using PushFar’s platform to offer a mentorship program for underrepresented people working in the UK gaming industry. Recent figures show that 70% of people working in the gaming industry are male, compared to 28% female and 2% non-binary workers, and that 10% of people are Black, Asian or minority ethnic (BAME).

Founder Anisa Sanusi established Limit Break in 2019 when she found it challenging to find a mentor in the gaming industry. She recognised the value of guidance and role models for underrepresented genders, LGBQT+ and people of colour, with representation in the workforce significantly below the national average of those in work.

Limit Break turned to Pushfar for a solution because the popularity of the mentoring program meant it was time consuming and required scaling. PushFar set up an accessible and intuitive platform, making it easy to match members based on their specific profiles, and allowing the program to have international reach. The platform also enables people to connect with people from specific backgrounds through a self-matching feature. Limit Break now has up to 700 people on their mentoring program, and has seen an increase in member retention.

Ed Johnson, CEO and Founder of PushFar, said: “Having a mentoring relationship is often noted as being one of the most beneficial things you can do for career development. Employees feel motivated and supported when they see senior leaders with whom they can relate. Limit Break has recognised the advantages mentoring can bring to their industry, and taken an active role in addressing diversity and inclusion issues through it. We’re delighted to be part of this solution and hope that our platform will help more people from under-represented groups join the games industry”.

Anisa Sanusi, Founder of Limit Break, said: “Actively mentoring candidates enables us to facilitate connections for a young workforce to those with experience. We want to help to keep the games industry rich with diverse talent and passion, and hope that our program will enable more people from under-represented groups to join the industry. Creating a mentorship program can be a time consuming and complicated task, but by using PushFar we’ve been able to make it simple and easy for everyone involved.”

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Compliance Updates

MGA | Updates to the Gaming Authorisations and Compliance Directive & Key Function Eligibility Criteria Policy

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MGA | Updates to the Gaming Authorisations and Compliance Directive & Key Function Eligibility Criteria Policy
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The Malta Gaming Authority is hereby publishing a series of amendments to the Gaming Authorisations and Compliance Directive (Directive 3 of 2018). The amendments mainly relate to the following:

  • The overall number of key function roles and their underlying responsibilities;
  • The deadlines by when certain key function requirements are to be observed;
  • The persons who shall shoulder responsibility in the absence of duly appointed key function holders;
  • The manner and form in which declarations and assurances are to be made by auditors on behalf of licensees during submission of audited financial statements; and
  • The applicability of suspicious betting reporting requirements.

These amendments are being published together with a Policy on the Eligibility and Ongoing Competency Criteria for Key Persons. This Policy is intended to revise and collate the existing eligibility criteria while also introducing authorisation renewal requirements related to continuous professional development for existing key persons. Moreover, the Policy clarifies the MGA’s position regarding the compatibility of key function roles with each other in light of the amendments to the Directive.

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It’s Official! SoftGamings and Golden Hero Collaboration Is Underway

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It’s Official! SoftGamings and Golden Hero Collaboration Is Underway
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For SoftGamings, there are never enough good-quality game providers in its network, and the newest addition of Golden Hero is a testament to that fact.

Golden Hero is an Isle-of-Man-based operator known for its production and development of video slots and pachislos, a special series of slots based on Japanese pachinko games. The brand’s popularity in Japan and other Asian markets comes from its successful games and partnerships with the industry giants such as JTG. This success prompted it to seek a reliable aggregation platform to expand its reach beyond the existing markets, and SoftGamings was a natural choice.

All of Golden Hero’s games are created using the latest HTML5 technology, which focuses on mobile casino gaming. Even though its portfolio is not grandiose in number, the quality of the games it offers is undeniable. One of its most successful titles is the Battle Dwarf pachislo, voted the 2019 Game of the Year at Slotcatalog.com. Other player-favourites include Jewel Race, Hawaiian Dream, and many more.

Golden Hero is a game provider licensed by the Malta Gaming Authority and certified by SIQ, which guarantees the fairness and safety of its games. In addition, the Gamesys Group, a company that owns Golden Hero, has recently been acquired by Bally’s Corporation, making Golden Hero a part of one of the world’s largest casino corporations.

Here’s what Irina Sazonova, the director of partnerships at SoftGamings, said when reflecting on the deal: “We are overjoyed to welcome Golden Hero to our fold and, with it, give our operators a chance to improve their game portfolios with exciting and never-before-seen titles. By working with us, Golden Hero will get a chance to expand to new markets and showcase its products in the best possible way, so this partnership is the essence of a win-win situation for all parties concerned.”

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