The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) is seeking to shut out 18 illegal gambling websites. The communications and media services watchdog wants the Australian internet service providers to deny access to these operators after receiving multiple complaints. According to the ACMA, the complaints leveled against the operators touched on infringement of the Interactive Gambling Act of 2001.
The decision was taken after the ACMA conducted investigations on the 18 offshore unlicensed online gambling operators. In light of the findings after their investigations, the ACMA is now urging members on these websites to withdraw their money before it becomes unavailable. The websites to be blocked include King Billy Casino, BitStarz, Loki Casino, Golden Star Casino, Joka VIP Room, Wild Card City, Woo Casino, BetChain, Fastpay Casino, 7BitCasino, and Syndicate Casino.
In its statement, ACMA explained that blocking websites offers a valuable chance to warn the public against playing at a particular website through a warning message displayed when a player attempts to access the website. The requests to block comes after the ACMA issued a reminder in November of 2020 to licensed operators in the country to comply with the existing advertising rules on gambling. This was after it came to the authority’s attention that several operators were interpreting the current regulations differently.
The ACMA has previously shown that it’s not afraid to flex its powers when it comes to streamlining the online gambling industry. In fact, according to the regulator, blocking websites is one of the effective weapons in its arsenal used in tackling illegal online gambling in the country. To show just how effective this tool is, since making its first request to block in 2019, 222 sites have fallen victim. Of the 222 blocked sites, over 100 unlicensed gambling operators have withdrawn from the Australian gambling market. This is since the authority started exercising powers bestowed upon it by the illegal offshore gambling rules established in 2017.
Not too long ago last year, the ACMA also requested internet service providers (ISPs) to block access to four offshore gambling websites. These were Always Vegas, Gibson Casino, Viggoslots, and Malibu Club Casino. The websites were also found to be in breach of the Interactive Gambling Act of 2001.