Lottery body ramps up consumer protection efforts

5 December 2018

The Global Lottery Monitoring System (GLMS) has become the latest industry organisation to introduce rules aimed at better protecting consumers through a new code of conduct for its members.

The code applies to all GLMS members, partners, employees and executive committee members. GLMS members, including Danske Spil, Svenska Spel, the Hong Kong Jockey Club and Française Des Jeux (FDJ), unanimously voted to adopt the code at its general meeting in Buenos Aires last month.

The code addresses both sports betting and lottery suppliers, with a focus across the board on integrity and authenticity issues. Among the stipulations are that members can only operate in jurisdictions where they are have secured a licence, and where sports wagering is legal.

“Competent and effective performance is critical to our success, but just as important is how we go about achieving results – with honesty, transparency and respect, without taking shortcuts, and by operating ethically and with integrity in all that we do,” GLMS president Ludovico Calvi explained.

The code calls on GLMS members to protect minors by ensuring that they have the relevant procedures in place to prevent underage gambling via their platforms. Minors also cannot be targeted via advertising.

GLMS members are ordered to only offer betting on competitions with a certain - unspecified - level of sporting interest, and where the operator can be sure that the “highest level of vigilance can be maintained”. Members are also urged not to offer odds on events that only involve minors.

Members must also immediately flag up any concerns over suspicious betting with the GLMS operational team, the public, sports authorities and any relevant law enforcement authorities.

The association also warns members not to acquire significant stakes in sports clubs or to close links with a sports person, to avoid conflicts of interest.

In the lottery suppliers section of the code, the GLMS encourages its members to provide solutions to conduct a “fair and safe gaming experience that protects players from the adverse consequences of gaming and gambling”.
  
All GLMS employees are prohibited from taking part in sports betting activities, unless they are granted permission by a supervisor. Staff are also banned from disclosing inside information to third parties, while the GLMS makes strong reference to its zero-tolerance approach to bribes, kickback and other improper benefits.

In addition, the GLMS pledges to only do business with reputable customers and suppliers that are involved in legitimate business activities and whose funds are derived from legitimate sources. It said this is part of a commitment to clamp down on money laundering activities.

Calvi added: “The adoption of the present code not only demonstrates that GLMS members - lotteries take their responsibility towards society in serious, but also proves the real commitment of the entire GLMS family to making zero compromises when it comes to the integrity of any step we take in our daily activity and operations.”

Over the past few weeks, a number of major industry bodies and organisations have set out their own strategies to protect consumers and uphold sporting integrity in various regions.

Last month, the UK Gambling Commission urged businesses and parents to step up efforts to protect children from the dangers associated with gambling, following the publication of a new report that identified a rise in the number of problem gamblers aged 11-16.

Elsewhere, Australia’s six governments have formally committed to launching a National Consumer Protection Framework for wagering, with plans to introduce a number of social responsibility initiatives in 2019, while operators across the US have joined forces to form a new body dedicated to upholding integrity in the country’s expanding sports betting market.