Regulator in Ontario closes the iGaming Self-Exclusion Gap
Recently, iGaming Ontario announced that it had fixed a problem where players might have cancelled online bets through a loophole in a responsible-gambling program. The province's iGaming industry launched last year, and soon after that, rumors started to circulate that there was a way for gamblers to exploit a glitch and reverse losing wagers.
Every operator in the province's sector is required to offer a voluntary self-exclusion scheme that locks a player away and keeps them away for a set amount of time due to the market being regulated. For self-excluded players, the program had the ability to void all upcoming wagers and reimburse wagerers for any winnings. But, some users might have abused it, according to officials.
Problem now fixed
The self-exclusion bug that allowed users to nullify bets was a problem, according to the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario, which acknowledged it last summer. Players having the opportunity to wager on the opposing side of an event through a different operator presented another problem, giving them the chance to both secure a winning play and receive a refund.
The regulator announced this week that it has clarified the laws regarding the cancellation and refunding of bets for self-excluded users. While bets must be finished when a player voluntarily stops participating, the regulator now requires that bets can only be fully refunded if a player signs up for a self-exclusion program prior to the commencement of the game.
According to AGCO's statement, operators are not compelled to refund bets if a player enrolls in a self-exclusion policy after the start of an event or sequence of events on which the wager's outcome is decided. The regulator added that the policy adjustments, which will take effect on February 28, 2023, were decided upon after careful consideration and consultation with the industry.
A consolidated self-exclusion scheme, according to iGO, necessitates a coordinated effort from all operators with provincial licenses, while simultaneously preserving player privacy via a secure and private program. The centralized self-exclusion scheme, according to the statement, is based on best practices discovered via academic research and from lessons learned from other international jurisdictions that have multi-operator igaming self-exclusion regimes.
Approaching Unlawful Operations
In the most recent edition of AGCO's annual report covering the period from April 1, 2021, to March 31, 2022, iGO made a commitment to pursue additional legal action against unlicensed operators in the province. The regulator anticipates that even more operators will move, increasing the province's economic advantage and revenue. One of the primary things on the agenda will now be dealing with the offshore more.
The iGaming industry in Ontario swiftly grew to be among the biggest in North America, and its success sparked a lot of outside interest. About 9,000 attempts from those outside the province to put online wagers on the Super Bowl were reportedly banned, according to GeoComply, a geolocation service provider.
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