UKGC Publishes the Enforcement Report for 2018/2019

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With a clear message, or a warning, depending on how you see it, the UK Gambling Commission announced to have published its Enforcement Report 2018/2019, presenting the industry with a report on how many enforcement measures they had to take in the last 12 months, saying that it would serve as an example to other gambling companies and as a lesson for those who, unfortunately, had to pay penalties for not being compliant to the rules.


The Enforcement Report 2018/2019

The UK Gambling Commission works tirelessly in an effort to control the UK gambling market and everything that happens on it. In the last 12 months, it has made several moves to improve the situation in the industry and make gambling safer and fairer for both players and operators.

The final result of their work was published on Thursday, 27 June 2019, informing the industry on the measures they have taken and the penalties they have had to issue. As the regulator said on Twitter, the report provides an overview of all these things but also sets future lessons for the UK operators. Justifying the moves before the public, the UK Gambling Commission emphasized the fact that what led to the tough action were operators’ failures to respect and follow the gambling rules.

The first thing the Commission said in the report was that gambling businesses and those who lead them needed to improve their customer protection strategies, supporting those who are at risk of gambling harms. The regulator said that they needed to do more to guard their businesses against money laundering, too.

Then, the regulator provided a link where everyone could see the exact content of the report, and continued by presenting the summary or the short version of all the enforcement work the UK Gambling Commission has undertaken in the last 12 months.

Over the past year, the regulator has carried out a lot of investigations, some of which we are well aware of. In fact, the precise number of investigations is 160. The enforcement measures had resulted in a variety of penalties and other sanctions against the senior management and operators themselves. A total of £19.6 million in penalty packages has been paid by operators, due to their failure to follow the gambling rules as set by the UK Gambling Commission, aimed at making gambling free from crime, fairer and safer. The Commission has also dealt with 2,000 intelligence reports and has carried out hundreds of compliance assessments based on gambling risk.

As for the report itself, by going to the UKGC’s official website, you will see that it is broken down in several disciplines that are relevant to the gambling industry, including safer gambling, anti-money laundering, affordability and player protection, marketing and advertising, illegal gambling and compliance.


Neil McArthur’s Statement

The Chief Executive at the UK Gambling Commission Neil Arthur said that he wanted gambling players in the UK to be able to enjoy the safest and fairest gambling in the whole world, and he wanted operators to work with the regulator to put players’ safety and enjoyment at the top spot of their corporate agenda.

As the report showed, Arthur said, the Commission would continue being tough when needed, when they discover that operators were bending the rules or failing to meet the regulator’s expectations. But, the Commission also wanted to try to minimise the need for such sanctions by providing operators with advice, a programme of support material and a programme of compliance activity in order to help them get things right in the first place and avoid penalties.

Neil Arthur stressed that it was highly important that as many people within the gambling industry as possible read the report, as it could serve as a support tool to digest the lessons that need to be learned for the future. On a positive note, he said, the Commission has also worked with many operators to raise standards by launching workshops and webinars. Pleased with the initial results of the initiatives, encouraging ideas and solutions proposed by operators, he finished his statement saying that the regulator will be evaluating the impact of these initiatives to make sure that they were resulting in favour of consumers, even though he was in no doubt that there was so much more to be done in order to make UK’s gambling safer and fairer.
 

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