France’s gambling mediator wants to curb excessive spending

France’s gambling mediator wants to curb excessive spending

France's gambling mediator wants to curb excessive spending
In a recent report and update published by the Médiateur des Jeux, France’s gambling mediator, in partnership with Autorité Nationale des Jeux, the country’s gambling regulator, the mediator has urged operators to step up their efforts in ensuring that consumers are protected. To achieve this, Honorary Magistrate Denys Millet, who works at the Mediator, has outlined four key commitments that companies ought to observe to achieve this. These new recommendations also come close to the launch of the UEFA Euro Championship, which is historically one of the most bet-on events. Excessive gambling, though, is not all that is discussed, as the mediator and regulator’s report also took a look at several outstanding issues with the current market. Among the recommendations is some advice about account closures based on a lack of sufficient KYC and AML information about a player. However, the mediator specifies that operators should not themselves confiscate a player’s winning, and instead, it should submit information to TRAFCIN, the French Ministry of Finance’s division that deals with money laundering, while also justifying why an account closure was necessary. The mediator also takes issue with some of the general terms and conditions used by gambling companies. One such is the policy to cancel bets at the business’ own discretion. Although a lawful practice, the mediator believes that this should be altered. Discussing responsible gambling in particular and excessive gambling, the mediator outlined several important steps to help rein in such spending. The mediator noticed that some account closures were carried out by operators who deemed a player to be an excessive gambler, but the mediator had received a challenge from the player saying that they were not. To avoid confusion, the regulator argues that an account suspension vis-a-vis cases that pertain to excessive gambling should come into effect as soon as players evade contact or fail to respond to responsible gambling and prevention messages directed at them by an operator. The mediator still urges operators to show a proactive approach and try to engage with players, asking them to lower their betting limits and achieve a better rapport that can result in less reckless spending. The mediator noted that the “instances of reckless and excessive gambling remained fairly low compared to the number of problem gamblers,” but that has not stopped operators and gamblers from failing to communicate on some level which has ended up in player accounts being shut down. The mediator believes that operators should indeed shut down accounts in those instances when players fail to respond to messages or modify their gambling behavior. Image credit: Unsplash.com

20 MAY 2024

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