We have reported on a number of initiatives by the UK Gambling Commission lately. Several operators were fined, in fact UKGC will collect a record amount this year. Betway were hit with a £11.6m fine in March, whereas Caesars Entertainment got an even harsher slap on the wrist with a £13 million fine in April.
Questions arose over how the UKGC is funded and whether they allocate their funds properly. In addition to fines and investigations, the UKGC has also launched a few other initiatives and the other regulatory bodies have also been quite active.
An initiative to decrease the maximum wagering amount on online slot games was launched in July this year. This time we bring you news that the UK Gambling Commission has just released its first National Strategic Assessment.
First ever National Strategic Assessment published by the UKGC
This document provides evidence using a large range of cases studies and other sources. This assessment allows the Commission to set its action plan for the upcoming period, regarding risks and other issues. The document also highlights the areas where significant progress has been made.
The UKGC CEO, Neil McArthur, said that the document will serve as a foundation and will help the Commission prioritise their work and actions in the upcoming months and years.
The Commission is looking forward to working with the UK Government and other factors and solve all issues that have already been outlined in the Strategic Assessment document.
McArthur also said that the Commission have demonstrated readiness and willingness to respond to new issues and problems and will use their powers and authorisations to protect customers. Gambling is now safer compared to the past, he concluded, but it will not stop there.
A lot of work when it comes to compliance
The Commission also published their Compliance audit, this document presents the Commission’s findings when it comes to compliance and whether the operators have been working in accordance with the compliance regulations.
During the last financial year the Commission have reviewed 49 licences. These are personal licences and they have also suspended five operating licences. Eleven operating licences have been revoked and a total of 12 penalties have been issued. The total amount that the Commission have gathered in fines amounts to £30 million.
Other results and actions include generation of over 3,000 intelligence reports, as well as dealing with over 600 reports of alleged betting activities and other potential breaches. The Commission carried out a total of 234 security audits and 350 compliance assessments of both online and land-based gambling operators.
The Commission CEO published remarks on this Strategic Assessment as well. He said that holding a licence is not a privilege or a right, it is a n obligation and a responsibility and all licensees have to ensure that they work in accordance with existing rules and regulations.
He restated the commitment to responsible and safe gambling, adding that lessons from previous failings must be learnt and that such documents are one of the ways of doing that.