EU Lotto, which is the owner of Lottoland, is obligated to pay a £760,000 fine imposed by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC). The company will also need to go through independent auditing as the regulatory body discovered several failings in the social responsibility and money laundering policy of the company.
In addition to the fine, EU Lotto also received an official warning from the UKGC due to its failures for the period between October 2019 and November 2020. Since the company failed to comply with the formal customer interaction guidance of the UKGC, it was accused of not meeting the proper social responsibility requirements.
EU Lotto Shows Negligence in Following Social Responsibility Guidelines
The UKGC has found social responsibility failings in several cases of EU Lotto’s operations. Whenever customers would frequently revise their deposit limits, the operator failed to recognise such activity as a sign of potential gambling harm.
Another shortcoming of EU Lotto was found in the company’s failure to properly assess the financial suitability of its customers. By not conducting proper affordability checks, the operator failed to determine whether customers were exposed to risks of gambling harm.
The regulatory body also revealed that EU Lotto did not employ measures in line with the UKGC formal customer interaction guidance. The Commission noticed that customers of the company were mainly informed about the responsible gambling tools they can use via emails that did not require any response. The regulator did not find any evidence of more extensive interaction with customers who could have been exposed to potential gambling-related harms.
Anti-Money Laundering Failings Revealed in EU Lotto’s Operations
In addition to the inadequate handling of social responsibility duties, EU Lotto had also failed to take proper actions against potential money laundering activities. This was another reason for the penalty fee and the formal warning issued to the operator.
For the period between October 2019 and November 2020, the company failed to properly assess bank statements provided by customers to verify their permanent addresses. Another serious fault of this sort was the company not restricting access for customers who did not comply with the source of funds requests.
While the UKGC requests operators to allow customers to only register cards that have the same names as the user who has opened the account, EU Lotto did not follow through with this guideline. Instead, the operator allowed several customers to register cards with cardholder names that did not match their own.
Lastly, the Commission revealed that EU Lotto failed to properly inform its customers on the amount they can afford to gamble based on factors such as wealth, income, and other risk-related aspects. Instead, the operator utilized ‘ineffective threshold triggers’ that were not informative enough.
Regarding the EU Lotto case, Helen Venn, UKGC Executive Director, commented that the fine imposed on the operator, as well as other similar cases, came as a result of compliance activity. She warned other operators that the regulator is ready to take action whenever the Commission’s high standards are not properly met.