Camelot, the operator of the UK National Lottery, has been penalized by the Gambling Commission after an investigation. The lottery operator will pay £1.15 million for multiple failings, including a fault in its mobile app and an incomplete list of raffle prizes.
A total of five failings were found in Camelot Group, which were serious enough to incur financial penalties, the UK gambling regulator announced on Thursday. The Gambling Commission had launched an investigation into Camelot after identifying problems related to its governance, risk and control framework. The probe was suspended temporarily to allow the company to work on solutions and implement new, improved policies. Responding to the comments of the industry watchdog, Camelot conducted a Board Effectiveness Review and came up with a program called Operational Excellence Program.
Following noticeable progress on both schemes, the Gambling Commission continued its investigation to ensure that Camelot was complying with its licence requirements. It identified five failings, including a defect in the lottery mobile app. The QR scanner of the application was showing incorrect prize outcomes, according to the regulator. Mobile users taking part in the National Lottery may have received a message that they were not winning when they were checking a winning lottery ticket via the QR scanner or manually.
On a separate occasion, the Results page on the National Lottery website displayed an incomplete list of raffle prizes. This occurred after a Lotto Medal Event draw and the page showed only 21 out of 88 prizes.
In Thursday’s announcement, Richard Watson, Gambling Commission Executive Director, said that Camelot had taken effective measures to rectify the problems and to prevent future failings. He maintained that the Lottery had to be operated fairly, safely and with integrity, so the regulator would continue monitoring its work and holding it accountable.
Five Failings Result in £1.15 Million Penalty Package
During its investigation of the Camelot Group, the UK Gambling Commission identified five failings, including the incomplete results published in the Olympic medal prize promotion and the incorrect prize outcomes in the mobile app. The rest of the issues that resulted in a fine were direct debit malfunctions, Post Office control failings, as well as insufficient security measures.
The penalty package comprises a £1,150,000 fine, as well as several conditions that need to be met by the lottery operator. Several such provisions are the recording of the identified licence breaches and the publication of the failings, as well as taking steps to rectify the issues regarding the Post Office, KLS and security.
A further ten licence breaches were found, some of which included incorrect results and ads published on the National Lottery website, a misprint in Lotto tickets, enabling unauthorized access into player accounts by third parties, and others.
Camelot, which was first was awarded the National Lottery franchise in 1994, has been penalized by the Gambling Commission several times in recent years. Although the operator is based in Watford, England, in 2010, it was acquired by the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, a Canadian pensions fund. It is one of the world’s largest institutional investors and it also owns the Cadillac Fairview, a Canadian property management corporation that manages and co-owns various shopping centres and office towers.