Australia to Ban Credit Card Deposits in iGaming

Gamblers in Australia will soon find themselves unable to gamble online using their credit cards. According to the government, people should not be able to wager money they don’t have. The Australian federal government is set to introduce the legislation in the next few months. The measure was first proposed in 2021 as studies demonstrated

Gamblers in Australia will soon find themselves unable to gamble online using their credit cards. According to the government, people should not be able to wager money they don’t have.

The Australian federal government is set to introduce the legislation in the next few months. The measure was first proposed in 2021 as studies demonstrated that 20% of gambling deposits are made using credit cards. During that same inquiry, Tabcorp noted that 13.7% of the payments it had received came from credit cards.

Michelle Rowland, Australia’s minister for communications, is a firm opponent of credit card gambling. She and the services minister, Amanda Rishworth, released a statement where they noted that brick-and-mortar properties already ban the use of credit cards. According to them, it is high time to leverage the existing BIN blocking framework to block credit card payments in iGaming.

As explained, the plan is to use BIN numbers to identify credit card numbers and bar the customers from using them to fuel their online gambling accounts.

Fighting Harm Is Not a Set-and-forget Exercise

The ban will be introduced through changes to the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 and will be consulted with the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) which will receive extra powers to enforce it.

The change was welcomed by Carol Bennett, the chief executive officer of the Alliance for Gambling Reform. Bennett praised the decision, saying that credit card wagering is a slippery slope into gambling harm. According to her, the measure will help to reduce problem gambling in the country.

Bennett pointed out that problem gamblers would often play using their credit cards and money that they don’t actually have or cannot afford to lose.

Bennett added that, unfortunately, gamblers would still be able to obtain cash using their credit cards and then use it for wagering. However, she believes that the measure would still do more good than harm and said that the amended law will bring iGaming policies into line with other gambling laws.

Protecting Australians from harm would not be an easy task. As Rishworth put it, fighting gambling harm is a constant battle.

Minimizing this harm is not a set-and-forget exercise. Bringing online wagering into line with land‑based gambling, where credit cards cannot be used, is another positive step.

Amanda Rishworth MP

In other news, a recent inquiry suggested that sportsbooks might be restricting players that tend to win a lot.

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