EGBA publishes new anti-money laundering guidelines for online gaming

The EGBA will hold a webinar about the guidelines.
The EGBA will hold a webinar about the guidelines.

EGBA members will apply the new guidelines to ensure compliance with EU anti-money laundering rules.

Belgium.- The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) has published its first pan-European guidelines for online gaming operators. The guidelines aim to ensure that operators apply strict compliance with European Union anti-money laundering (AML) rules.

The EGBA says the guidelines have been reviewed and revised by top anti-money laundering (AML) compliance experts and reflect the latest technologies and laws, building upon its commitment to promote the highest level of industry responsibility in AML.

The guidelines contain practical, sector-specific guidance on how online gambling operators should conduct customer and business risk assessments, customer due diligence processes, suspicious transaction reporting, record keeping, and other essential areas which require strong AML compliance.

They apply a risk-based approach and aim to support the sector’s compliance with Europe’s various AML rules, including the EU’s upcoming AML Regulation. EGBA member operators should apply the guidelines across their EU operations and will be required to submit yearly reports to EGBA summarising their progress in implementing them. Other operators have been invited to join the initiative.

Publication of the guidelines follows a consultation period in the autumn of 2022, during which the EGBA invited feedback from industry experts and national regulatory authorities.

The EGBA says its members are committed to a strong culture of AML compliance. In 2021, they were subject to 30 AML audits by Europe’s gambling and financial regulatory authorities and submitted nearly 13,000 suspicious activity reports to national law enforcement agencies to support Europe’s fight against money laundering.

EGBA director of legal and regulatory affairs Dr Ekaterina Hartmann said: “As the sophistication of financial crime continues to evolve, the publication of these AML guidelines demonstrates EGBA’s commitment to ensure that Europe’s online gambling sector actively contributes towards the fight against financial crime.

“There’s currently a lack of sector-specific guidance to help Europe’s online gambling operators in their AML compliance efforts and these guidelines provide a valuable tool to fill this gap and help operators achieve the highest possible standards.”

The EGBA said it will organise a webinar to present the guidelines.

In January, the EGBA announced that for the first time, a non-member of the association had joined its expert committee on cyber security. Belgium’s Napoleon Sports and Casino joined efforts to improve pan-European industry cooperation on cyber security.

Formed last March, the group comprises cyber security experts from prominent online gambling firms. It’s open to all European companies, but this is the first time a non-EGBA member has joined. Firms must sign a Memorandum of Understanding and prove they comply with principles designed to maintain high standards in cyber security.

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