UKGC Hits White Hat Gaming with £1.3M Fine
White Hat Gaming, the UK-licensed gambling operator, has agreed to pay a £1.3 million regulatory settlement after an investigation by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC).
As part of the UKGC’s regular compliance work, it found problems with the way that White Hat Gaming identified and managed players who were at high risk of money laundering and problem gambling.
The failures took place on a number of the operator’s brands between October 2016 and March 2019, including Grandivy.com, 21casino.com, Hellocasino.com and Dreamvegas.com.
The UKGC has said that there were inadequate anti-money laundering and social responsibility procedures that led to failures, such as the operator not establishing the source of funds for a customer who lost £70,000 over three months. There was also ineffective interaction with another player who lost £50,000 in just six hours and a third who lost £85,000 in just over one hour.
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The £1.3 million payment from White Hat Gaming, in place of a financial penalty, will go towards supporting the National Strategy to Reduce Gambling Harms. The operator has also undertaken to commit to a program of policy and procedure improvements. These will include the automatic cutting off players once limits are hit, improved safer gambling customer interactions, and a more thorough source of funds checks.
“Through our tough compliance and enforcement activity we will continue our work to raise standards in the industry and continue to hold failing operators to account,” said Gambling Commission executive director Richard Watson.
The settlement comes as there is increased speculation that the UK may be about to ban betting company sponsors from appearing on football shirts. The government is currently undertaking a review into gambling laws and there have been reports that the ban may be introduced this autumn, despite the fact that the sport is suffering from revenue loss due to the pandemic.