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UKGC: New rules to make online gambling in Britain fairer and safer

George Miller

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UKGC: New rules to make online gambling in Britain fairer and safer
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Reading Time: 3 minutes

 

The UK Gambling Commission has announced new rules which online operators must follow to make gambling safer and fairer.

The new rules, which follow an open consultation, will ensure operators verify customers’ age and identity details faster which will benefit consumers.

Safer for children

Until now, online gambling businesses have been allowed 72 hours to carry out age verification checks. The operator cannot permit customers to withdraw winnings until age verification has been completed and must return stakes if the person is found to be underage.

But to guard against the risk of children gambling, new rules mean operators must verify customer age before the customer can:

  • deposit funds into an account
  • gamble with the licensee with either their own money or a free bet or bonus.

In addition, the Commission is now also insisting that customers must be age verified before they are able to access free-to-play versions of gambling games on licensees’ websites. While free-to-play games are not technically gambling (there is no prize involved), there is no legitimate reason why they should be available to children.

Fairer and safer

In March 2018 the Commission announced that some online operators were treating customers unfairly by requesting additional identity information when the customer attempted to withdraw winnings. Around 15% of complaints to its contact centre were about licensees not allowing a customer to withdraw funds until they submit certain forms of ID.

The new rules require remote licensees to:

  • verify, as a minimum, the name, address and date of birth of a customer before allowing them to gamble
  • ask for any additional verification information promptly
  • inform customers, before they can deposit funds, of the types of identity documents or other information that might be required, the circumstances in which the information might be required, and how it should be supplied to the licensee
  • take reasonable steps to ensure that information on their customers’ identities remains accurate.

The changes will help operators better prevent harm or detect criminal activity because they have more information about their customers. In addition, the changes will mean that operators cannot demand that customers submit ID as a condition of cashing out, if they could have asked for that information earlier.

Finally, the changes will increase the likelihood that someone will be identified if they attempt to gamble while self-excluded. This applies equally to the operator’s own self-exclusion schemes and the online multi-operator self-exclusion scheme, Gamstop. This is because effective verification by operators will mean that a customer will not be verified, and therefore unable to gamble, until they provide correct details. These details will then be checked against both the operator’s own self-exclusion database and the verified data held by Gamstop.

Neil McArthur, Gambling Commission Chief Executive, said: “These changes will protect children and the vulnerable from gambling-related harm, and reduce the risk of crime linked to gambling.  They will also make gambling fairer by helping consumers collect their winnings without unnecessary delay.’’

“Britain’s online gambling market is the largest regulated market in the world and we want to make sure it is the safest and the fairest. Today’s changes follow our review of online gambling and our ongoing widespread regulatory action into the online sector.  We will keep using our powers to raise standards for consumers.”

Jeremy Wright, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said:

“These significant changes mean operators must check someone’s age before they gamble, and not after. They rightly add an extra layer of protection for children and young people who attempt to gamble online. By extending strong age verification rules to free-to-play games we are creating a much safer online environment for children, helping to shut down a possible gateway to gambling- related harm.”

The new rules come into force on 7 May.

The Gambling Commission will shortly be launching a consultation on plans to make explicit our expectations about how to interact with a customer who may be experiencing gambling-related harm and will be calling for evidence on the use of gambling blocking software.

George Miller started his career in content marketing and has started working as an Editor/Content Manager for our company in 2016. George has acquired many experiences when it comes to interviews and newsworthy content becoming Head of Content in 2017. He is responsible for the news being shared on multiple websites that are part of the European Gaming Media Network.

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Jackpocket Announces Gaming Industry Veteran Gavin Isaacs as Senior Board Advisor at Betting on Sports America

George Miller

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Jackpocket Announces Gaming Industry Veteran Gavin Isaacs as Senior Board Advisor at Betting on Sports America
Reading Time: 2 minutes

 

Jackpocket, a mobile-first startup helping to modernize state lotteries, proudly appointed Gavin Isaacs as a senior advisor to its board of directors. Isaacs is currently the chairman of SBTech, a sports betting and gaming technology supplier, which he joined in January 2019 after serving as the president and CEO of Scientific Games.

Isaacs will work with Jackpocket’s board, which includes investor partners from Silicon Valley-based BlueRun Ventures and Conductive Ventures, New York-based Subversive Capital, and the executive team, to help set growth strategy and guide the mobile lottery startup’s expansion to new jurisdictions in 2019 and beyond.

“It’s been so thrilling to witness Jackpocket’s evolution over the last few years, and to see it fully embrace all of its hurdles and turn them into opportunities for creating a better lottery experience,” said Mr. Isaacs. “It’s an exciting road ahead, and I’m eager to do my part to help the team navigate regulated spaces and shape new strategies for modernizing the industry.”

Based in Las Vegas, Isaacs brings 20 years of experience building multi-billion dollar businesses around the world, which includes leadership positions as COO of Bally Technologies, CEO of SHFL Entertainment (acquired by Bally Technologies) and president of Aristocrat. An Australia native, he started his career as a commercial real estate lawyer in Sydney before transitioning to the gaming industry.

“We’re fortunate to be in a position where we can be really thoughtful about who we have in our court, as we fortify our leadership position as a gaming technology company in a changing industry,” said Jackpocket Founder and CEO Peter Sullivan. “With lotteries and iGaming undergoing such rapid transformation, and in many cases starting to converge, we know that Gavin will bring valuable counsel and foresight in making more inroads for our growth.”

Jackpocket’s leadership team along with Mr. Isaacs are in attendance at this year’s Betting on Sports America, and available to discuss the announcement and their plans for 2019 with attending media. Jackpocket, which raised a Series B round of funding in October 2018, plans to make its flagship app, which lets players order official state lottery tickets, available in 10 states by the end of the year.

 

About Jackpocket:

Jackpocket is the first third-party app in the U.S. that offers players a secure way to order official state lottery tickets, such as Powerball, Mega Millions and more. As a no-cost, no-integration, turnkey platform, Jackpocket helps lotteries drive incremental revenue—benefiting essential state programs such as public education, veterans assistance, natural resources and more—while attracting new customers like millennials who otherwise would not be active lottery players.

Jackpocket’s mission is to create a more convenient, fun and responsible way to play the lottery. Through the app, players can place orders for their favorite games, check lottery results, join lottery pools with other Jackpocket players, and turn on autoplay so they never miss a drawing. And by being the first company to automatically lock a player’s identity to their ticket serial number, Jackpocket makes the lottery even more secure. Jackpocket is currently available in Minnesota, New Hampshire and Texas, and expanding to many new markets in 2019.

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SPIRIT GAMING Signs Partnership Deal with Moniko

Niji Narayan

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SPIRIT GAMING Signs Partnership Deal with Moniko
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SPIRIT GAMING from Germany has signed an agreement with Macedonia based TITO ticket specialist, Moniko, to bring its high-quality tickets to Austria, Belgium, Germany, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Switzerland and The Netherlands. The contract was officially signed during the ICE exhibition in London by both company owners.

Moniko is the only manufacturer of slot tickets in Europe. This guarantees less delivery time and transport cost to European companies. Standard tickets are available from stock.

“We are very excited to be an exclusive partner for Moniko. We look for partners that innovate and wish to bring new solutions to the industry. Moniko fits the bill perfectly. The German paper quality is just one example of the difference Moniko makes to slot tickets. The environmental benefits, especially in times when climate change is being discussed all over the world, play an important role as Moniko is the only European manufacturer of TITO tickets,” commented Frank Ziegler, founder and CEO of SPIRIT GAMING.

“SPIRIT GAMING is making a name for itself in the European gaming market and not just in its home country of Germany. We need strong partners who know and understand the market and can anticipate and lead change. We wish the team at SPIRIT GAMING every success,” added Vladimir Kjurchiev, owner and CEO of Moniko.

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Reflex Gaming’s B3 offering set to ‘level the playing field’

George Miller

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Reflex Gaming's B3 offering set to 'level the playing field'
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As the impact of this year’s FOBT stake reduction begins to be felt across the wider UK amusement and gaming industry, the independent games creator Reflex Gaming continues to deliver on its strategic development across both the digital and bricks-and-mortar space as it broadens its B3 offering via the Genesis menu housed in the state-of-the-art GamePro cabinet.

Commenting on the menu’s successful integration within the AGC market, Mat Ingram, Chief Product Officer at Reflex, said: “As a relative newcomer to the B3 market it is sometimes difficult for us to get traction in an AGC market that is already well-supplied by the incumbent providers. However, our Genesis menu and GamePro cabinet combo along with our highly-functional Slingshot ecosystem has given players something a little different and is continuing to deliver for operators. The effective removal of B2 games from LBO venues does “level the playing field” somewhat but the mid-to-long term effects of this are yet to be understood. Certainly, Reflex feel that we are well-placed to become a key supplier to the new B3 landscape and our development roadmap reflects this.”

While Reflex aim to maximise player satisfaction, the company also keeps operators at the forefront of its machine design and has been analysing the profitably of grouping B3s to enhance the machines capabilities on premise. Ingram continued: “There’s no doubt that our B3 machines perform much better in groups. This isn’t peculiar to Reflex machines, it’s just how it works. The presence you create by banking multiple machines outweighs the sum of the parts, and we have certainly found this to be true for GamePro. It is much easier to ignore a single machine in a busy AGC, particularly as these tend to be put on the end of banks of other machines or in a corner away from the main traffic. Banking machines also helps with the Community games as these are a lot more effective when the players are adjacent to one another.”

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