Irish IBA updates Safer Gambling Code


In Ireland, a ban on the use of credit cards in retail and online stores for Irish customers was accepted by bookies, while also agreeing to a “whistle-to-whistle” advertising ban before the turn for sports live.

The pair of initiatives is a part of a modified code of good practice for safe play contributed by the representative body of the country’s book industry, the Irish Bookmakers Association (IBA). The updated code describes a set of minimum industry commitments across a range of measures to protect players.

According to the IBA, all of its members, including the owner of Ladbrokes Entain, the owner of Paddy Power Flutter Entertainment and Boylesports, are expected to adopt the most recent version of the code. Bet365, Betway and The Kindred Group, which is responsible for brands such as Unibet and 32Red are among many other major operators that would adopt the updated code.

Go in the right direction:

IBA President Sharon Byrne said the organization recognizes the need for the industry to develop the highest standards for safer gaming and that the ban on using a credit card and whistle-to-whistle restrictions are “milestones on this path”.

“The IBA has long called for the creation of a regulatory body in Ireland,” says Byrne, “and we welcome the government’s commitment to legislate in this direction in the coming period,” she said. declared.

Byrne went on to explain that code is not the answer to problem gambling and they believe that more can be done “within the forum provided by a regulator”. However, she said, “we believe these measures continue the path the industry has made in recent years to ensure improved standards for all.”

Compliance by the end of the year:

Hailed by the body as “revolutionary within its reach”, the code (pdf), which has been adopted by all IBA members and the lion’s share of licensed online companies that operate a bookmaker or casino in Ireland, would be fully operational this year. As mentioned above, the code represents a set of minimum industry commitments.

The code, according to the IBA, has been globally updated, with the two main changes being linked to credit cards and advertising. Updates are said to be in place for some operators while others are expected to make the “necessary technological changes” in their respective businesses by the end of 2021 at the latest.

Other restrictions:

A restriction on TV advertising involving live sporting events before 9 p.m. will also be introduced by the industry and will be effective from 5 minutes before the start of a live event until 5 minutes after (whistle) its conclusion. Horse and greyhound races are not included.

Sponsorship of television entertainment programs is included in the restriction on gambling advertising, however, it does not include televised sporting events.

Byrne said they believe changes are important to customers and that they represent “the largest industry initiative ever seen in Ireland since the introduction of Safer Gambling Week”. She added that they hope the “few operators” who have yet to approve the code “will do so for a long time.” And they “look forward to working with the proposed regulator to adopt new evidence-based measures.”

North Ireland:

Earlier this year it was announced that for the first time in 35 years “significant changes” would be made to gambling laws in Northern Ireland. The legislation to be introduced that allows bookmakers to open their doors on Sunday and Good Friday while allowing children to play slot machines will be an offense.

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