UK CMA takes enforcement action against gambling firms

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UK CMA takes enforcement action against gambling firms

Postby The Fox » Fri Jun 23, 2017 1:07 pm

UK CMA takes enforcement action against gambling firms

23 June 2017
The UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has today (Friday) confirmed it will launch enforcement action against a number of online gambling operators suspected of breaking consumer law.

The move comes as a result of a joint programme of work with the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC), regarding the treatment of customers by internet gaming brands in the UK market.

Last year, the UKGC contacted the CMA over concerns related to potential breaches of consumer law, such as misleading promotions and unfair terms being used by companies to block players’ pay-outs.

The CMA has now found that various operators have been engaging in practices “likely to be breaching consumer law” and, as such, will take action against these companies to bring any illegal activities to an end.

In addition to the enforcement cases, the CMA said that its joint work with the UKGC could lead to further action in order to help improve practices across the wider online gambling market in the UK.

Nisha Arora, senior director for consumer enforcement at the CMA, said: “We know online gambling is always going to be risky, but firms must also play fair; people should get the deal they’re expecting if they sign up to a promotion, and be able to walk away with their money when they want to.

“Sadly, we have heard this isn’t always the case; new customers are being enticed by tempting promotions only to find the dice are loaded against them.

“And players can find a whole host of hurdles in their way when they want to withdraw their money.

“That’s why we are today launching enforcement action where we think the law has been broken.

“We are also asking people who have had difficulties withdrawing their money when they’ve gambled online to tell us about it, and help probe this issue even further.”

Sarah Harrison, chief executive of the UKGC, added: “Gambling operators must treat customers fairly – but some have been relying on terms that are unclear with too many strings attached.

“Whilst the CMA takes enforcement action on how consumer legislation is followed, the gambling industry should be under no illusion that if they don’t comply with consumer law, we will see this as a breach of their operating licence, and take decisive action.”
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