Wagering Companies Breach In-Play Betting Rules

December 16, 2023 | illegal gambling

SYDNEY, Australia (December 15, 2023) — The ACMA found the operators of Ladbrokes, Neds, bet365 and Sportsbet, breached  rules through their use of ‘Fast/Quick Codes’ to facilitate in-play betting on sports matches.

Under the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 in-play betting on sports matches is prohibited with limited exceptions, which include placing the bet over the phone. However, for the exception for phone betting to apply, information about the bet selection, bet type, bet amount and confirmation of a bet must be provided by a customer wholly via the phone call.

A Fast/Quick code is provided to a customer when they use the operators’ website or App to build an in-play wager. The Fast/Quick code embeds the event, bet selection, and bet type of a customer’s in-play wager. When the customer calls the operator to place their bet over the phone, they quote the Fast/Quick Code along with the bet amount and confirm the bet.

Ladbrokes and Neds (Entain), bet365 (Hillside) and Sportsbet (Sportsbet) in-play betting services were found to individually generate Fast/Quick Codes for each particular in-play bet when that bet was built by a customer via the service’s website or App–at least for the first customer. Under these circumstances, the ACMA found that the betting information encapsulated in the Fast/Quick Codes had been communicated to the wagering service via the website or App, rather than wholly via the phone call (as required for the phone betting exception to apply).

Following the investigations, all three operators have taken steps to ensure their use of Fast/Quick Codes complies with relevant interactive gambling rules. These steps mean that Fast/Quick Codes will be generated by the operator prior to the events commencing, independent of a customer selecting that bet. They will be generic and the same for all customers.

In view of these steps taken, the ACMA has decided not to take any further enforcement action at this time.

Please see a summary and investigation reports for this matter on the ACMA website.

SOURCE: The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA).

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