The UK Gambling Commission has been particularly diligent in penalizing errant gambling operators in the past several months and news about its latest punitive actions emerged this past Friday.
The regulator announced that it has suspended the licenses of two online gambling operators for failing to fully integrate the UK’s self-exclusion scheme GAMSTOP into their operations.
Dynamic, trading as Prophet, and Sportito were the two operators that faced the regulatory agency’s wrath after failing to participate in UK’s industry-wide self-exclusion scheme.
In January, the Gambling Commission informed its licensees that they must participate in GAMSTOP, a free service that provides gamblers with the opportunity to self-exclude from gambling with iGaming and online sports betting companies that are licensed in Great Britain for a certain period of time.
Locally licensed operators were ordered to join the self-exclusion scheme by March 31. However, Dynamic and Sportito failed to integrate GAMSTOP with their operations.
The UK Gambling Commission said on Friday that it has suspended the two operators’ licenses and has instigated reviews into their activities under Section 116 of the Gambling Act 2005 as the regulator believes they had breached a condition of their licenses and that they “may be unsuitable to carry out the licensed activities.”
Gambling Commission Lifted Sportito’s License Suspension
Following the suspension of its license, Sportito has implemented the UK’s self-exclusion tool and has had its license suspension lifted, the Gambling Commission said Friday. However, the review of its activities continues.
As for Dynamic, its license suspension is set to remain in place until the regulator is satisfied that the gambling operator has successfully integrated the GAMSTOP scheme and that its activities are fully compliant with the provisions of the Gambling Act 2005 and with its license conditions.
Commenting on the suspension of the Gambling Commission’s two license holders, the regulator’s Chief Executive, Neil McArthur, said that they have “made it clear to operators that we are ready and willing to use our powers to protect consumers.”
Mr. McArthur went on that “self-exclusion is an important tool to protect vulnerable consumers, which is why we made it compulsory for all online operators to be signed up to GAMSTOP by March 31.”
The Gambling Commission’s Chief Executive also noted that the regulator has taken action because the two operators had failed to comply with the deadline and this “placed vulnerable consumers at risk.”
Just a day before the Gambling Commission’s announcement that it has suspended the two operators’ licenses, the regulatory body announced that it has slapped a record £13 million fine on US casino operator Caesars Entertainment Corp., which operates 11 gambling establishments across the UK.
The regulator levied the hefty penalty after uncovering systematic failings in the major company’s social responsibility, anti-money laundering, and customer interaction practices.
So far in 2020, the Gambling Commission has issued £27 million in penalties, including Caesars’ £13 million fine, a £11.6 million fine imposed on Betway and a £3 million fine slapped on Mr Green, a subsidiary of William Hill.
In addition, the regulatory has suspended the licenses of three other gambling companies for various failures, with those companies being Stakers Limited, Addison Global Limited, and Multi-Media Entertainments Limited.