Australia has stepped up its effort to eliminate illegal online gambling websites. Earlier this week, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) requested local ISPs to block international operators that aren’t permitted to locally.
This is initially aimed at Emu Casino and Fair Go Casino, both of which are Curaçao-licensed. Australia only allows betting related to sports and racing, and both operators violate this action. The two websites have received over 50 complaints, according to the AMCA’s Chair Nerida O’Loughlin. Much of this relates to the two sites apparently not paying out winnings. In full, she said:
“In many cases these sites refuse to pay out significant winnings, or only a small portion. Customers have also experienced illegal operators continuing to withdraw funds from their bank account without authorisation.”
Since 2017, 65 unregulated operators have been removed from the Australian market. Not long ago, the AMCA announced that it would be getting stricter on the online casino ban in the 2001 Interactive Gambling Act.
Last year, gambling authorities in Australia started to implement heavy fines. Now, penalties of up to AU $1.3m per day can be dished out to law-breakers. Customers are also blocked from getting credit from these companies by the government.
On top of being blacklisted within Australia, regulators in illegal operators’ home countries are also made aware of their actions.
But looking at some recent figures, it appears as though more changes are still necessary. When it comes to illegal gaming sites, $400m is still collectively spent each year on these by Australians. Had gamblers used legal ones instead, some figures believe that $100m could’ve been raised by the government.