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The largest iGaming fines in the past five years

The iGaming industry, like many others, has faced various challenges since it first started.


The iGaming industry, like many others, has faced various challenges since it first started.

Now, the industry is focused on tightening regulations and cleaning up the virtual game space in the protection of players.

The past 5 years brought on various challenges of its own such as issues including COVID-19 but for online operators, the focus is on internal issues.

Industry fails and fines

Many were struck with massive fines due to the failure of complying with standard regulatory requirements.

According to GamblingIndustryFines.com's 2020 report, regulators issued over £44 million in fines throughout the year.

The primary reason for many fines was due to the failure of operators being able to meet social responsibility or issues with anti-money laundering schemes. Other problems include a shortcoming in responsible gaming policies and offering unauthorised incentives to players.

Many operators have received lash back for failure to follow protocol which includes heavy fines. As the industry has become bigger and more popular, the fines have become substantially larger.
In 2020 alone, there was a massive number of fines, only building on the fines of years before.

The objective at the current time is not to punish online operators unnecessarily but rather ensure they stick to the right path.

Biggest fines for 2020

During the previous year, operators across the globe received fines for different reasons. It started as early as January 2020 when the Malta Gaming Authority fined Blackrock Media for servicing unauthorised transactions. This fine was a whopping £2m.

Sweden has tightened its grip on the industry restricting various financial incentives that could urge players to spend more on gameplay. Companies such as The Kindred Group received a fine of SEK 100 million ($9.5m) for violating the new legislation.

Later in the year, Caesar's Entertainment UK received a fine of £13 million. BGO Entertainment also had anti-money laundering issues and social responsibility failings which led to a £2 million fine. For NetBet there was a £748,000 fine when anti-money laundering shortcomings were brought to light.

The company also received flack for its shortcoming in terms of responsible gambling procedures and policies.

Other fines throughout the years

In 2019, UK gambling firms had to pay £19.6 million in fines for failure to protect players or stop money laundering. About £7.1 million of the fines went straight to Daub Alderney who is in charge of sites like Kitty Bingo and Lucky Pants Bingo.

One of the biggest issues found by the Gambling Commission was the allowance for players to gamble large sums of money in short periods of time. This is problematic as it is often beyond their personal affordability and operators don’t intervene, leading to dangerous gameplay.

Another massive fine was the £11.6 million settlement for Betway. The online betting firm allegedly accepted stolen money from big-spending VIP players. Clear gambling addiction signs were visible with no attempt to help or stop these players from accessing the site.

32Red was in hot water in 2018 when the online casino operator was accused of encouraging a problem gambler to keep playing. The online casino operator received a heavy £2 million fine ($USD 2.7 million) for its failure to help the player and the encouragement of dangerous gameplay activities.

These fines and increasing changes in regulations are indications of the seriousness and dedication governments and regulators have towards protecting players. There is an increase in the number of problem gamblers and regulators across the globe are hard at work at putting restrictive measures in place and additional controls to give players back control.

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