Australian media watchdog requests blocks on more illegal sites 


The Australian Communications and Media Authority has undertaken another round of enforcement, with the media watchdog requesting that further sites be taken down and become inaccessible for residents.

This has seen a request sent to the country’s internet service providers, which urges that blocks be placed on five more illegal offshore gambling websites that were found to be operating in breach of the Interactive Gambling Act 2001.

Following the latest round of investigations that uncovered the breaches, the latest sites to be blocked include Reef Reels, Royal Reels, Ricky Casino, Slots Gallery, and Slotastic, following 12 similar requests being made in June.

Since the ACMA made its first blocking request in November 2019, which forms just one of a range of enforcement options that can be utilised by the media watchdog, 823 illegal gambling and affiliate websites have been blocked.

In addition, more than 210 illegal services have also pulled out of the Australian market since the statutory authority started enforcing new illegal offshore gambling rules in 2017.

Alongside this latest action, the ACMA also issued a reminder to customers that “Australians who use illegal gambling services are not protected by Australian laws. This means our laws can’t help if something goes wrong, like if the service provider withholds winnings”.

Earlier in the week, the long-mooted launch of the BetStop national self exclusion register took place within the country as government looks to heighten protections and give those most at risk of harm the support they need.

This will permit individuals to register to be excluded from all Australian licensed online and phone wagering services, such as those offering betting on horse racing or sports, from three months to permanently.

In addition, providers must promote the services via websites, apps and marketing materials, with the ACMA, which gains overall responsibility for Betstop, to commence with a public awareness campaign.