Australia has been very aggressive in its pursuit of a safer gambling environment for its citizens. In addition to introducing some very robust regulations, the country is also looking into further mechanisms to make the process a success. Recently, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) issued blocking orders against some affiliate gambling sites.
The seven affiliate gaming platforms that were the target of these blocking orders were allegedly directing players to illegal offshore casinos. This is part of the commission’s ramped-up efforts that will see it block all websites that are driving traffic to ‘online casino type services’.
Most of the sites in question were found to be affiliate advertising websites that worked as independent review platforms. They include Aussie Casino Hex, Australia OK Casinos, Aussie Online Pokies, Pokies, Australian Casino Club, Australian Gambling, and True Blue Casinos.
“These marketing sites can push you to illegal gambling services that do not have the protections that go with licensed and regulated services. We often get complaints from consumers that winnings are not honored and that incentives and pressure tactics target problem gamblers.”
ACMA Authority Member Fiona Cameron.
The new orders were mainly directed at the country’s internet service providers (ISPs). That is a great place to start as it significantly curtails access to these illegal gambling sites.
A Ton of Progress
It has been a little over 3 years since Australia’s Interactive Gambling Act 2001. That marked a new beginning for the country’s massive gambling sector. It proved to be very helpful in weeding out illegal gambling operators that had swarmed the iGaming space. Since the Act was passed, nearly 300 gambling websites have been blocked from offering their services to Australian gamblers. In addition to that, up to 144 services have left the country’s marketplace.
These are very far-reaching impacts. 2020-21 was mainly about looking into online gambling sites that catered to Australian citizens. That has paid off for ACMA quite well. Now, the focus seems to be on the illegal affiliate sites that present just as much of a challenge as full-fledged online gambling operations.
While this might seem like a bizarre way of killing some of those businesses, it might be a good thing. In addition to ensuring that the gamblers in the country are protected, it could also point to an opportunity for more growth for the country’s gambling sector. It could take a while for it to get to its full potential but this should give it a bit of a boost.