Engine selected to drive Australia’s first self-exclusion project

| By Richard Mulligan
Technology provider Engine Australia has been appointed by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) to deliver the country’s first national self-exclusion register for online and mobile gambling.
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Engine previously designed and developed the UK Gambling Commission’s self-exclusion scheme, Gamstop, which launched in 2018.

The new platform being built on behalf of the ACMA will allow people to self-exclude from all licensed interactive wagering service providers. The length of self-exclusion will start at three months and extend to a permanent opt-out from accessing such gambling services.

Providers will also be prohibited from directly advertising and promoting to any self-excluded person.

“The register will make a difference for people who want help changing their gambling habits and will complement existing consumer protection measures,” ACMA chair Nerida O’Loughlin said.

“If you choose to self-exclude, this register will ensure your account is closed, your money returned, and no further advertising or promotion activity will be directed your way.

“Engine is well-placed to deliver this protection having designed and developed Gamstop, the United Kingdom’s self-exclusion register.”

Engine will now begin extensive consultations with stakeholders as part of the platform’s initial design and development process. The service is expected to be trialled later this year, with an anticipated launch before the middle of 2022.

The ACMA reiterated that people can still contact individual operators to self-exclude from their services or register with other existing programmes during the development of the new platform. Other programmes that currently provide such support include one offered by the Northern Territory Racing Commission, which covers many of Australia’s larger bookmakers.

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