Tuesday, 19 November 2019 11:19

ACMA requests ISPs to block two illegal offshore gambling websites Featured

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ACMA requests ISPs to block two illegal offshore gambling websites Image stuart miles, FreeDigitalPhotos.net

The telecoms regulator ACMA has requested Australian Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to block illegal offshore gambling websites Emu Casino and Fair Go Casino.

The two sites will be the first blocked following the Australian Communications and Media Authority’s investigations that found they offer online casino-style games which are prohibited under the Interactive Gambling Act 2001.

As reported by iTWire earlier this month, the the ISPs were given the green light to block offshore gambling sites under tough new powers mandated for the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) by the Federal Government.

ACMA Chair Nerida O’Loughlin said the investigations of the sites to be blocked were launched following a number of complaints.

“Emu Casino and Fair Go Casino are illegal sites that target Australians, and between the two we have received more than 50 complaints about their conduct,” O’Loughlin said.

“They’re happy to take your money when you lose, but people have reported to us that they refuse to pay out winnings.

“If you have funds deposited with these—or any other an illegal offshore gambling site—you should withdraw those funds now.”

ACMA has a range of enforcement and disruption options available to protect Australians against illegal gambling.

“Enforcing Australian laws against offshore companies is challenging. There is no single measure that will be successful in every case,” O’Loughlin said.

“Blocking access to websites sends a strong message that the ACMA can and will take action to stop illegal operators from targeting vulnerable Australians.”

The ACMA says more than 65 illegal companies have pulled out of the Australian market since 2017 when the it started enforcing new illegal offshore gambling rules.

The ACMA publishes a Register of licensed interactive wagering services so that consumers can be sure services are legal in Australia, and information about how consumers can protect themselves from illegal gambling operators is available on the ACMA website.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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