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Action on interactive gambling: October to December 2018

Complaints received-Interactive gambling 78 enquiries and complaints received and assessed
Investigations completed-Interactive gambling 15 investigations completed involving  30 distinct gambling sites
Breach-Interactive gambling 27 breaches of the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 (IGA) found
Formal warning-Interactive gamblingformal warnings issued

Enquiries and complaints

Of the 78 enquiries and complaints received during this period, 47 (60 per cent) were valid complaints that could be investigated under the IGA.

enquiries and complaints - Interactive gambling complaint October to December 2018

You can make a complaint to the ACMA if you believe that a prohibited interactive gambling service or an unlicensed regulated interactive gambling service is being provided to Australian customers or advertised in Australia.

Investigations

We may investigate interactive gambling matters on our own initiative or where a valid complaint is made.

An investigation may look at a number of sites and may also include findings on a number of matters. For example, in a single investigation we might consider if a service is a prohibited interactive gambling service and also whether an advertisement for the service was published in Australia.

In this period, 15 investigations were completed, which considered a total of 30 distinct URLs.

One or more breaches of the IGA were found in ten investigations. There were a total of 27 separate findings of breaches:

  • 19 related to providing a prohibited interactive gambling service to Australian customers
  • four related to providing an unlicensed regulated interactive gambling service to Australian customers
  • four related to advertising a prohibited or unlicensed regulated interactive gambling service in Australia.

Investigation breaches by type 

Investigation breachesby type - Interactive gambling complaint October to December 2018

The ACMA does not publish the names of entities involved in investigations.

Enforcement actions

We have a range of powers to deal effectively with breaches, including the power to:

  • issue formal warnings
  • issue infringement notices
  • apply to the Federal Court or Federal Circuit Court for civil penalty orders and/or injunctions
  • refer a matter to the Australian Federal Police for investigation, or to the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions, in connection with criminal offence provisions.

In addition, we can:

  • notify relevant international licensing authorities if an operator is in breach of Australian law
  • refer directors/principals of offending operators to border protection agencies for inclusion on the travel Movement Alert List
  • report URLs to family-friendly filter providers.

Enforcement action undertaken in this quarter

Action

Number

Formal warnings issued

5

URLs reported to family-friendly filter providers

62

Stakeholder engagement

We continue to actively engage with international regulators, national regulators, licensing authorities, service providers, sporting and racing bodies, and other federal government agencies to raise awareness of the IGA and to promote compliance.

Education and awareness-raising

To coincide with the 2018 Spring Racing Carnival, we conducted a social media campaign to educate consumers about betting with an Australian licensed wagering operator. A link was provided to the ACMA register of licensed operators.

The other focus of the campaign was to alert consumers to the credit betting prohibition, with a link provided to information on the ACMA website.

The campaign ran from 12 October to 10 November 2018 and resulted in 20,443 page views of the register, with an average time spent on the page of 7.56 minutes, while the credit betting information page had 5,765 views, with an average time spent on the page of 6.22 minutes.

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