As of September 29, 2023, Responsible Wagering Australia (RWA) will enforce the measure aimed to ensure responsible gaming practices and protect online gambling stakeholders from fraudulent and money laundering activities. As reported, the registration of online wagering accounts will now require Australians to verify their age and identity with an operator before proceeding to make any transactions with their accounts. The new identity pre-verification system will reportedly replace the current identity verification procedure allowing a 72-hour time frame to perform the required action.
Instant Identity Checks:
In the press release, Kai Cantwell, the CEO of Responsible Wagering Australia, said that the measure will help online operators to identify underage and self-excluded individuals before making any transactions through the online wagering service likely to expose them to problem gambling risks. Mr Cantwell reportedly said that the measure also represents a valuable vehicle ”to mitigate money laundering and terrorism financing risks.”
Reliable Verification System:
Pre-verification system, according to the CEO, will allow RWA members to instantly verify the identities and ages of more than 90 percent of customers. As reported, Cantwell stated that the measure has been adopted and supported by the Commonwealth Government as it will now allow the entire online betting industry to meet the standards prescribed by the RWA to mitigate gambling harm for the individuals and companies alike.
Ensuring Safer Gambling:
‘‘Pre-verification provides online wagering operators the ability to continue to advertise the adoption of safer gambling tools, with customers prompted to set a deposit limit upon registration, ” Cantwell reportedly stated. The CEO indicates that the members of RWA are well aware of the importance of safe gambling practices. For this reason, they reportedly provide an array of tools to ensure safe gambling operations.
According to the press release, a large number of these tools have been approved by the Commonwealth Government and set forth within the National Consumer Protection Framework (NCPF). Cantwell reportedly said: ‘The NCPF is expected to be evaluated shortly and we look forward to engaging in this process to ensure that consumer protections are fit-for-purpose and help Australians stay in control of their gambling behaviour.” He added: ‘‘Online wagering providers offer the highest level of safety to consumers, with the real-time collection of individual customer data allowing providers to intervene early when they identify unusual or concerning betting behaviour. ’
The pre-verification measure targets susceptible population groups in Australia, such as underage individuals and those included in the self-exclusion program. These individuals will now be prevented to access their online betting accounts to make transactions, which should protect them from gambling risks. ‘‘However, to effectively reduce gambling harm, regulation must be applied consistently across all forms of gambling, not just online,’’ Cantwell reportedly said.