The UK Gambling Commission has been taking the rules and regulations it has in place very seriously when making checks on UK licensed operators and a number are falling short of its expectations. We have seen recently that InTouch Games surrendered its licence, Done Brothers (Betfred), Videoslots, Skill On Net, William Hill and more have all been affected.
Normal Play is Still Safe
Now we know this might give readers cause for concern, but most of these breaches are not in relation to the day to day operation of the sites, how the games play or how the operators look after the money of the average punter.
Where the operators are being caught out is by not having enough checks in place to cover certain aspects of the business:
- to protect those that are betting bigger and more often, that might be a sign of a gambling problem and potential gambling harm
- to ensure that the bigger and more frequent deposits and bets are not actually money laundering operations or covering terror financing
Lindar Media was reviewed between July 2021 and September 2022 and in addition to the above failings they also did not advise the Commission when a person in a key position left, they did not make the expected annual contribution to the fund that helps combat problem gambling and that the firm fell short on following all of the advertising codes concerning appealing to minors.
What Penalty Will Lindar Media Face?
The technical terms for the outcome of the investigation is ‘Divestment, Payment in lieu of financial penalty, Commission costs and Public statement’.
As the UKGC was happy that Lindar Media were already taking steps to fix the issues before and immediately after the report the payment in lieu of financial penalty was set at £690,947, which will be used for socially responsible purposes. The firm agreed to publication of the facts of the case and they had to pay the UKGC investigation costs.
What does all this mean for players?
While we say these things need not be a worry to those who play online bingo, slots and casino games and like to bet on sports, it may be that in tightening up rules to meet the UKGC standards, we might all be inconvenienced with more ID checks, checks on how much we can afford to play and checks on where our spending money comes from. This will not go down well with many, so the operators really need to find the path of least resistance with players while meeting their licence requirements. That’s a tightrope to walk!