Australian punters who have a gambling problem will soon be able to completely exclude themselves from all sorts of online and phone betting, as well as other gambling services bookmakers offer and their targeted advertisements.
The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) authorized Engine Group, the technology group that created and launched GAMSTOP in the United Kingdom, to come up with a similar solution for the Australian wagering scene.
Self-Exclude from Everything Betting-Related via a Single Process
The register will be the first of its kind in Australia. It will allow bettors to self-exclude from all forms of betting and gambling online, as well as betting over the phone.
Punters will be able to self-exclude through a single process, but only from betting operators that are licensed and regulated in Australia. These will include licensed sports betting and horse wagering providers that accept bets online or over the phone.
Once the register becomes operational, it will allow punters and problem gamblers to self-exclude for both short and longer periods of time. They will be able to stop all interaction with betting services for as little as three months but can stop seeing all forms of licensed Australian wagering products for life too.
Wagering providers, for their part, won’t be able to advertise their products and services to punters for the period for which they have excluded themselves.
A Comprehensive Self-Exclusion Solution
ACMA Chair, Nerida O’Loughlin, said that the register will be a complete game-changer for people who want to alter their gambling habits. O’Loughlin added that the self-exclusion register would also complement the existing punter protection measures that are in place.
The ACMA Chair said that when a person will decide to self-exclude, the register would do several things:
- All betting accounts will be automatically closed;
- The money on those accounts will be returned;
- Punters will be excluded from all future promotional activities that bookmakers have.
O’Loughlin is convinced that Engine is the right software developer to create and implement the self-exclusion register in Australia, as it designed GAMSTOP, the acclaimed self-exclusion register in the UK.
According to ACMA’s chief, the agency will now engage with betting providers and try to get some input from the wagering industry regarding the design of the system and its rules.
She said that ACMA would also work closely with punters and problem gambling advocacy groups to make sure that the new register would meet consumers’ needs and protect their privacy.