BGC urges crackdown on unregulated operators

The standards body BGC has called for the government to use the Online Harms Bill to crack down on unregulated gambling operators.

UK.- The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) says that a new analysis has revealed that consumers are exposed to large numbers of unlicensed operators (38%) through search results for key gambling terms on major search engines.

The study shows that 4 in 10 search results for key gambling terms on major search engines are unlicensed black-market operators. 27 million visits from UK IP addresses to black-market gambling sites, and around 200k people in the territory have used illegal gambling sites in the past 12 months.

Thus, the BGC has called on the government to ensure that the Online Harms Bill, soon to be introduced in parliament, includes action to crack down on platforms who profit from unregulated, black market gambling operators.

“The sizeable proportion of gamblers using unlicensed operators reveals that the size of the active ‘black market’ in the UK today is worth around £1.4 billion in stakes,” said the BGC.

Michael Dugher, Chief Executive of the BGC, said: “Search platforms are promoting black-market gambling operators for profit, putting the British consumers, including children, at risk. None of the UK’s strict licensed safeguards are in place on these illegal sites.

“Regulated bookies and online operators have a strict zero-tolerance approach to underage gambling, yet unlicensed operators are free to prey on vulnerable consumers. We welcome the Government’s Online Harms Bill. But it also provides the Government with a chance to clamp down on the black-market and help protect punters who want a flutter in a safe environment.”

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