The new German gambling regulator will review current player protection rules and create a platform for complaints and whistleblowing.
Germany. Members of the board at Germany’s new national gambling regulator, die Glücksspielbehörde (GGL), have given the first details of plans to strengthen player protection measures in the country. They plan to carry out a “data-based evaluation” of the country’s current rules.
The new regulator is expected to be up and running to launch on January 1, 2023. However, board member Ronald Benter has said that it is already looking at strengthening player protection measures.
He said it would create a system to allow the data-based evaluation of existing player protection measures contained in the Fourth State Treaty on Gambling, which came into force last July. The current rules include a €1 spin cap for online slots. The regulator said it would propose changes to legislators if it deemed them necessary.
Benter said: “Our objective is an internal evaluation system to measure the effect of the player protection measures of the treaty.”
Complaints and whistle-blower system for online gambling
The regulator also plans to devise an early detection system for gambling harm and to create a centralised complaints and whistleblowing system that the public will be able to use to report ‘irregularities’ with licensed gambling operators, advertising violations and suspicions of illegal gambling.
It aims to develop an automated process “to quickly initiate appropriate measures and to receive automated evaluation options about the frequency of complaints on specific topics or providers.”
Benjamin Schwanke, another board member, said: “We will approach relevant experts and institutions in the area of provider-related early detection systems for gambling addiction, because we need further development of common, cross-provider scientific standards for early detection of gambling addiction.”
He said the regulator was talking with industry associations about free gambling harm services available on the national public health hotline Bundeszentrale für gesundheitliche Aufklärung (BZgA).
The GGL, which is being hosted by the German state of Saxony-Anhalt, launched its website last month. It says that 110 staff will be required by the agency before it becomes fully operational on January 1.
Until then, the executive of Hesse remains the temporary body for German sports betting licences while Saxony-Anhalt is responsible for online casino and poker licences. The north-eastern state was chosen to host the federal gaming supervisor in 2020 as part of the development of the new federal treaty on gambling, which established a federal regulated online gambling market from last July.
Bundestag representative Anne Poggemann is serving as the state’s first gambling minister and overseeing the creation of the GGL, which will have its headquarters in Halle in the south of Saxony Anhalt. Ronald Benter and Benjamin Schwanke will lead the regulator as joint chief executives.
As well as licensing, the GGL will be responsible for maintaining databases monitoring player engagements and operator activities.