Tue, 26 Feb - 08:08
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Media Release: New 14 day verification rules to protect young people and vulnerable gamblers

From today, new national rules come into force that reduce the customer verification period for new online wagering consumers from 90 days to a maximum of 14 days.

Minister for Families and Social Services, Paul Fletcher, said this is the first measure delivered under the National Consumer Protection Framework for online wagering,since its announcement, late last year.

“The National Framework is an Australian first, and will help people to better control their online gambling,” Mr Fletcher said.

A recent study commissioned by the Victorian Responsible Gambling Foundation found that sports betting participation has grown substantially in recent years and is emerging as a significant contributor to problem gambling, especially among young men.

“One quarter of bettors reported being under 18 when they placed their first sports bet and of all young men who bet on sport, 70 per cent were found to be at risk of, or already experiencing, gambling harm,” Mr Fletcher said.

“Quicker customer verification means that online wagering providers will be able to reduce the risk of underage or self-excluded participants gambling online, including any fraudulent or illegal activity by participants, when they shouldn’t be.  

“With more than 240,000 people at risk of, or already experiencing significant harm from online wagering, we are delivering reforms to protect vulnerable Australians.” 

The National Framework builds on other legislative changes the Liberal National Government has implemented, including stopping illegal offshore providers, restricting advertising, and prohibiting lines of credit for online wagering and links between payday lenders and online wagering operators. 

The Government is encouraging all states and territories to progress their legislation to enable full implementation of the National Framework as soon as possible.

“We will closely monitor the impact of the National Framework, including the new rules for verifying online gambling customers,” Mr Fletcher said.

In 12 months, we will assess this measurewith the intention to further reducing the verification period to 72 hours.”

People needing help or support are encouraged to contact the National Gambling Helpline on 1800 858 858 or visitwww.gamblinghelponline.org.au