The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) is requesting Internet Service Providers (ISPs) block even more offshore gambling websites that are in breach of Australian laws. They’ve been ordering Aussie ISPs to do this since late 2019 and since then, a total of 324 sites have been subject to the banhammer.
In 2020 there was several rounds of gambling website blocks by ACMA. The most recent request made will impact:
- Spin Bit
- Fight Club
- Kim Vegas
- Yoju Casino
The ACMA said it decided to block these sites following numerous complaints about their services. The regulator investigated the latest batch and found them to be operating in breach of the Interactive Gambling Act 2001.
Since the ACMA made its first blocking request in November 2019, 324 illegal gambling websites have been blocked. (The ACMA lists them all via that link, in case you were curious.) But this number has risen substantially since August last year, when only 92 were on the list.
147 illegal services have also pulled out of the Australian market – a result of the ACMA starting its offshore gambling website enforcement action in 2017.
The ACMA also has a list of legal gambling websites and wagering services, so if you want to make sure the platform you’re using is doing the right thing, it’s best to check they have a licence.
Gambling Websites and the use of Credit Cards
The Senate Standing Committees on Environment and Communications this month wrapped up an inquiry into the gambling industry. Its inquiry was centred on amendments to the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 that would prevent gambling websites and services from accepting payments by credit card.
The amendments to the Act would also create a criminal offence and civil penalty provision for those that do so. The ACMA would also oversee this.
As with any government inquiry, the committee held hearings and accepted submissions. It heard testimony from the likes of Tabcorp that blocking the use of credit cards for gambling was fine, as long as it was the banks that handled all of it.
The committee handed down its report earlier this month that essentially just said “we don’t think this amendment should be passed”.
If you or someone you know needs help, feel free to give Gambling Help a buzz on 1800 858 858, or call Lifeline on 13 11 44.