One claim, that the casino deliberately used incorrect ID cards to avoid having to report transactions worth more than AU$10,000 will be investigated by Australia’s financial intelligence agency, AUSTRAC, which upholds anti-money laundering regulations, and the other allegations will be investigated by the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation.
We hope, for the sake of Australian casino players who have frequented the Crown Casino, that these allegations are unfounded, but this story does highlight the benefits of having extremely tight gambling regulations, such as those imposed on the UK gambling industry by the Gambling Commission.
The Gambling Commission was established via the Gambling Act 2005 to regulate commercial gambling in Great Britain, and it has several important measures in place to protect UK gamblers in a variety of ways, including:
Voluntary Spending Limits
Many gambling organisations in the UK allow players to set known spending limits before play begins, or to set limits concerning the amount of time one should be allowed to play for, and how often. These limits, which can often be set when playing online or when playing gaming machines in the premises of licenced bookmakers, help gamblers to protect themselves from the risk of being swept away by the adrenaline of the activity.
If any gambler feels that they are spending more cash than they would like on their gambling activities, or that they are spending too much time playing, the Gambling Commission allows them to enter into a self-exclusion agreement with any regulated company, be it online or offline. The self-exclusion agreement is usually for a stated time, with a minimum duration of six months, and the company concerned has the obligation to close the player’s account, as well as to avoid marketing to them.
Compulsory Regulatory Inspections
All organisations regulated by the Gambling Commission are inspected regularly to ensure that they are operating in full compliance with all rules relating to their particular gambling licence. These inspections may include checking the payout percentages of gaming machines, assessing the protocols that companies have in place to deal with spending limits, self-exclusions, and preventing play by individuals who are not yet of legal age, and more.
Whilst there is always the possibility that a rogue organisation can flout the rules under which it operates, the comprehensive approach to regulatory enforcement that is taken by the Gambling Commission makes it far less likely to happen in the UK than in less tightly regulated countries. In the light of stories such as the one currently causing such concern in Australia, it is especially good for us to pause from time to time and appreciate just how hard the Gambling Commission works to assure our casino safety.