Online Casinos Have No Responsible Gambling Policies

An Australian gambling addict is hoping to recover his losses with two offshore casinos which allowed him to gamble despite his self-exclusion from pubs, clubs and casinos in Australia.

‘Responsible Gambling is a Joke’

Blake Barnard, 42, who lost nearly AU$300,000 ($201,000) while gambling with online casinos registered in Curacao, is considering taking legal action against the casino operators, arguing that they should have been able to prevent his losses instead of taking advantage of his problem gambling, reported ABC News.

“It’s disgusting the way they operate,” Barnard commented, calling out online gambling operators for their lack of responsible gambling policy and procedures and convinced that the online gambling industry is not considering responsible gambling seriously.

“Responsible gambling is a joke, really, in the online gambling industry. It’s non-existent,” Barnard, who lost roughly AU$150,000 ($100,500) of his own money and another AU$150,000 ($100,500) that belonged to his mother, a pensioner with multiple sclerosis, concluded.

On the availability of online casinos, Barnard said that their accessibility from mobile phones did not help either, and even when his bank blocked his deposits to the casinos, Luckystar, one of the two casino operators proposed to him a way around it in an email, suggesting the use of cryptocurrencies.

And while Barnard is right that it is not illegal to gamble with offshore casinos, he may find it difficult to recover his losses with the online casinos that are registered in Curacao and have unknown ownership, as the tiny Caribbean island – part of the Netherlands – is considered to be a paradise for gambling operators, with no regulation, no law enforcement and no taxation at all.

ISP Blocks Prove Futile

Barnard also reported ufa888 the online casino websites to the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and while Luckystar is among the group of 652 websites submitted for blocking to internet service providers (ISP), operators have a way around this by utilizing mirror sites.

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Luckystar asked Barnard to provide an ID upon registration despite that the online casino, as well as many other registered there, does not have a know-your-customer (KYC) policy. As for crypto deposits, the websites are clear that customers can keep their anonymity.

The decentralized model of crypto is the one that allows such practices and makes online casinos targets of organized crime that is seeking ways to launder proceeds of crime. The inability to track the origin of the money and its final destination also poses difficulties for financial integrity authorities.