UKGC has launched several initiatives in the past few months and it seems that they show no intention of slowing down in the upcoming period.
Towards the end of last month, the Gambling Commission published safe online gaming guidance, while the Betting and Gaming Council published a ten-step action plan which is aimed to help player to stay safe during this period.
Then at the beginning of this month, the Commission issued one of the heftiest fines. Namely, Caesars Entertainment are to pay £13 million, after UKGC discovered a number of failures that this operator committed. The failings primarily had to do with the operator not being able to handle so called VIP customers and their accounts in a way prescribed by the Commission.
The business plan for 2020/21 was also published last week and reducing gambling harms is one of the key priorities for the upcoming period. Generally, the Commission remains dedicated to maintaining a safe gambling environment online.
Two licences suspended, one later lifted
The UKGC continued to carry out regular checks in order to determine whether operators work in line with there standards and procedures. The Commission reached a decision to suspend the licences of two online operators that failed to integrate the self-exclusion scheme GAMSTOP.
The implementation of GAMSTOP previously was just a recommendation, but this year it was made a requirement for all operators, and most of them did comply. Operators were notified at the beginning of this year that they will have to participate in GAMSTOP from 31 March onward. This was actually added as a requirement of the licencing conditions, as provision 3.5.5.
The two operators that are suspended are Dynamic and Sportito. The former is trading as Prophet. Following the publishing of the decision, Sportito did integrate GAMSTOP and as a result the licence suspension has been lifted, but the Commission will continue to monitor the situation.
The Commission Chief, Neil McArthur, stated that they have made it very clear to all companies that the UKGC is going to do everything within their power to protect their consumers.
Self-exclusion remains an important tool
McArthur also stated that the ability to self-exclude is one of the key mechanisms aimed at players’ protection, especially when it comes to vulnerable individuals, i.e. people who have, or might have a gambling problem. He added that that both investigations will continue. We can expect these reviews to continue in the future and more operators to be reviewed. Operators will be expected to comply with these measures and all requirements that have already been implemented by the UKGC.