Operators in Sweden Slapped on the Wrist for Marketing to Self-excluded PlayersPublished December 2, 2019 by Lee R
Swedish Consumer Agency KO is prepared to come down hard on operators who market to self-excluded customers.
Operators in Sweden are getting called on self-excluded ad violations.
Those in Breach
Injunctions have been issued by Swedish Consumer Agency (KO) against William Hill-owned Mr Green and Karl Casino.
The L&L Europe-operated brands were found to have marketed to self-excluded customers, a fairly serious breach in light of the global regulation priority of user protection and effective self-exclusion.
Mr. Green and L&L Europe have been ordered to cease all communications across the board with consumers who have voluntarily signed up for Sweden's progressive national self-exclusion system Spelpaus, or face fines of SEK2m (£162,053/€189,388/$208,455).
KO Spokesperson Clarifies
KO process counsel Johanna Nybnlom explained the decision:
“The law is very clear on this point; the idea is that players who want to pause or stop playing should be completely protected from direct inducements to gamble, as well as from getting advertising directly on mobile devices or via email.”
The Mr. Green violations were found by the KO in a July supervisory investigation revealing operator contact of self-excluded players via direct mail and email.
Mr. Green blamed the technology, saying the communications were unintentionally sent due to errors in information mapping between the customer database and the mail platform for mail.
The KO found fault with the fact that Mr. Green sent advertising directly to players on the list, deeming it unfair and in breach of Swedish gaming law: Chapter 15, Section 2 of the Gaming Act specifically prohibits the sending of any marketing materials to a player who has self-excluded.
The findings were part of a greater June KO investigation into whether L&L Europe had contacted self-excluded players via direct mail and email.
L&L Europe has asserted that the error was corrected by adding a code automatically filtering out players who do not register social security numbers when data is exported for marketing measures; while terminating cooperation with an unnamed partner whom had committed two violations.
If operators are to be held to bear for technical violations to protect players in regulation jurisdictions including Sweden, it appears operators should be prepared to do sufficient preventative testing in order ot remain complaint and avoid more costly fines.