The Interactive Gambling Act passed by the Parliament of the Commonwealth of Australia on 28 June 2001 regulates gambling operations on the territory of Australia.
Before 2011 Australian online gambling establishments could provide services to both foreign and local public. But the government decided to protect Australians from harmful impact of online gambling, and passed a new law forbidding gambling establishments to provide services to citizens of Australia.
This law also includes a prohibition on advertising gambling on the territory of Australia. For violation of the law you will have to pay a substantial fine: $220 thousand from natural person and $1.1 million from legal person. But companies can advertise their services to citizens of other countries.
Local people are allowed to participate in betting and online lotteries only. You can place a bet on sports event result only before it starts, and you cannot bet during matches. What concerns non-sporting events – bets are accepted throughout the event.
Lottery tickets can be bought online, as well as you can participate in drawings online. But instant lotteries and keno are prohibited.
The government has continually raised the question of introduction amendments to the law and liberalization of online gambling activities, but the majority of statesmen are vocal opponents of gambling, so no changes have been made yet.
Despite prohibitions and restrictions of online operations, Australian casinos are very popular, and Australia is acknowledged to be one of the world leaders in terms of online game offers.
Besides that, experts note that Australian online casinos have one of the best security systems in the world, protecting against hacking attacks.
Different territories obey different laws
Australia consists of 6 states, 3 mainland territories and several external territories. Each administrative area has its own legislation that regulates gambling activities. Licensing requirements are also different on each territory.
Therefore before choosing the licensing jurisdiction, you should decide on the territory for running business.
The majority of territories offer licenses for betting terminals and betting activities in certain jurisdiction. Online sports betting is available in the Northern Territory, and Norfolk Island provides licenses for online betting shops.
General requirements to licensees on the territories of Australia
Despite the fact that each administrative area has a different legislation, which requires applicant’s careful examination, there are some general requirements common for all jurisdictions:
- Observation of all legal provisions and collaboration with law enforcement authorities.
- Creation of physically comfortable gaming environment.
- Providing conditions for safe financial operations, meaning that any risks related to financial transactions must be excluded, for example ATMs mustn’t be located on the premises of casino, there must be a cash withdrawal limit etc.
- Advertising aimed at Australian citizens is prohibited. But it is allowed when aimed at foreign citizens.
- Casino staff must have high qualification and degree of training, as well as have a command of several languages.
- Casino operations must be fair and transparent, assistance should be provided to militate against money laundering.
- Absolute confidentiality and protection of customers’ personal data.