ACMA bans iGaming affiliate advertising sites

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ACMA watchdog expands blocking remit to iGaming affiliate advertising sites

The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) regulator has asked Australian internet service providers to block affiliate advertising websites. The regulator used an official press release to detail that this effort has seen it ask domestic Internet service providers to block access to seven affiliate advertising domains. The first action was taken as such enterprises often present themselves as independent reviewers of gambling services in order to offer surreptitious links to unlicensed online casino and sportsbetting enterprises.

ACMA Authority Member Fiona Cameron said this is the next step in disrupting the major illegal operators and minimising harm to Australian consumers.

“These marketing sites can push you to illegal gambling services that do not have the protections that go with licensed and regulated services,” Ms Cameron said.

“We often get complaints from consumers that winnings are not honoured and that incentives and pressure tactics target problem gamblers.”

Illegal online gambling services include online casinos where you can play slots, roulette or poker games for money. ACMA’s actions build on significant activity taken since its responsibilities were expanded under the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 in 2017. Results include:

  • 279 illegal gambling websites blocked
  • 144 services departing Australia altogether
  • A 95 per cent reduction in traffic to the top ten gambling websites blocked to June 2021 (based on Similarweb data)

“ACMA has information available to help you and is actively pursuing illegal gambling sites and their affiliates to get them out of Australia,” Ms Cameron said.

A list of illegal gambling sites that have been blocked is available on the ACMA website. The ACMA announced that they are focusing on gambling affiliate sites as a 2021–22 compliance priority, after a focus in 2020–21 on online casinos targeting Australians.