Over the last few months we have seen a number of online gambling operators receive some quite hefty fines, most of which have focused on failings in their social responsibility.
However, a fine levied against ElectraWorks recently was one that was focused on misleading advertising, and the fine was retrospective of complaints being upheld by the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).
It was on 17th August 2016 that the first complaint was filed and it focused on a bonus. The complainant had challenged that the ad for the bonus in question was not clear in the significant terms and conditions and the ASA upheld the complaint.
The complainant had deposited £17 at bwin.com and expected to receive the welcome bonus advertised. Instead he was informed that in order to receive the bonus, he had to wager £102!
You can read the full adjudication here.
Despite the complaint being upheld, the Gambling Commission found another advert on site which was similar to that which attracted the initial complaint!
A few months later in April 2017, several other brands from the same company were found to have similar breaches. Two months after that, the same issues were found on the same sites.
The sites were:
Despite all of this, August 2017 found yet another breach on the Casino Las Vegas website!
You can read the full Decision notice here.
The Commission Programme Director, Richard Watson, said
This fine should serve a warning to all gambling businesses that we will not hesitate to take action against those who mislead consumers with bonus offers or fail to ensure they are correctly licensed.
We’re just waiting to see which other operators are about to get a slap on the wrist or a substantial fine because you only have to look through the history of ASA rulings to find numerous breaches like those from Electraworks!