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By Ralph Trayfalgar, Updated:
Following news of Allwyn Entertainment taking over duties as the chief operator for the UK National Lottery, the Gambling Commission has fined outgoing lottery operator Camelot £3.15 million for failings in its services.
According to the Commission, the investigation found that Camelot failed to uphold or otherwise violated their license requirements on three separate occasions, resulting in the fine. The £3.15 million fine will go to charitable causes.
The first violation involved the National Lottery’s mobile gambling app, in which winning tickets were incorrectly marked as non-winners when scanned with the mobile app’s built-in QR code scanner. Up to 20,000 users were reportedly affected by this issue between November 2016 and September 2020.
Another failure involved a glitch in the purchasing process for lottery tickets that affected over 22,000 customers. The glitch resulted in the users being charged for and receiving two tickets despite only intending to purchase one ticket. The customers who encountered this issue were later given appropriate refunds or other equivalents.
The third failing saw marketing messages being sent out to users who either voluntarily joined a self-exclusion program or were otherwise marked as vulnerable to gambling-related harm. Of these, some 65,000 users who were blocked from purchasing products from the national Lottery were also sent these marketing messages.
UKGC CEO Andrew Rhodes said of the incident: “We are reassured that Camelot has taken steps to make sure that their National Lottery app is fit for purpose. However, we must caution Camelot that any failings on their duties will be met with consequences. Today’s announcement reinforces that any operator failing to comply with their gambling licence requirements will be investigated by the Commission and we will not hesitate to issue fines if requirements are breached."
This news is the latest in a string of fines imposed by the Gambling Commission on various online UK casinos over the previous weeks. With the long-awaited review of the Gambling Act finally coming in May, these fines may potentially serve as a sign for things to come.