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ACMA Issues Warning to Proxous for Supplying Casino Games

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The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has continued to crack down on offshore gambling operators in recent years. Now it appears the ACMA has decided to go a step further in its efforts against online gambling. On Aug. 5, 2022, the ACMA issued a formal warning to a provider of casino games called Proxous Advanced Solutions Limited. As far as we are aware, this is a new strategy as this is the first time the ACMA has targeted a casino games provider directly.

ACMA Issues Formal Warning to Online Casino Games Provider Proxous

Historical Background

In 2017, the Gambling Act of Australia was amended. The amendment states that betting operators cannot offer services to Australian players unless an official Australian license is held.

In the time since the amendment was enacted, the ACMA has utilized numerous tactics in its attempt to thwart offshore, online gambling. The primary method the ACMA has employed is through directing Internet Service providers (ISPs) to block access to sites deemed to be illegal. The ACMA has also targeted websites that have promoted gambling as a part of its efforts.

Sometimes, the ACMA liaises with other authorities in various jurisdictions around the world to put pressure on internet gaming sites and convince them to leave the Australian market. It also drafts threatening letters and legal documents, which it sends to companies that it believes are contravening the law so as to scare them into desisting from serving Australians.

What is Proxous Advanced Solutions Limited?

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Proxous Advanced Solutions is a software engineering and licensing agency. The ACMA alleges that Proxous has been knowingly sub-licensing casino gaming software to illegal offshore casinos specifically Realtime Gaming (RTG) software.

Realtime Gaming is a longstanding casino game creator responsible for popular slot offerings like Mister Money and Ares: The Battle for Troy. Proxous has been successfully supplying online casino operators with numerous RTG games through these sub-licensing deals. Thirteen casino brands were mentioned in the warning letter.

Home Page of the Proxous WebsiteHome Page of the Proxous Advanced Solutions Limited Website

ACMA Issues Formal Warning Letter to Proxous Advanced Solutions Limited

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The ACMA has issued a formal warning to Proxous Advanced Solutions Limited for supposedly illegally providing gaming software. An investigation found that Proxous sub-licensed Realtime Gaming (RTG) branded software utilized by thirteen online casinos. The ACMA alleges that Proxous has breached the Interactive Gambling Act 2001 by supplying these supposedly illegal casinos with games, like slots.

The letter issued by the ACMA claims that Proxous has been illegally sub-licensing casino games and that Proxous knew that what they were doing was illegal under the Interactive Gambling Act 2001. The thirteen online casinos mentioned directly in the warning letter are:

  • Fair Go Casino
  • Two Up Casino
  • Free Spin
  • BoVegas
  • Uptown Pokies
  • Uptown Aces
  • Red Dog Casino
  • Slots Empire
  • Cherry Gold Casino
  • Play Croco
  • Aussie Play
  • Ozwin Casino
  • Reels Of Joy

The ACMA usually goes after the casino sites themselves, so to see the ACMA issue a formal warning letter to a company simply providing software is certainly a noteworthy occurrence. We aren't sure how successful this letter will be; perhaps, only time will tell.

ACMA's Recent Enforcement Tactics

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In recent years, the ACMA has been restricting access to online gambling by blocking certain “illegal” gambling sites directly through ISPs. The ACMA has steadily been adding sites to its blacklist; back in early 2020, the ACMA blocked access to nine sizeable online casino operators. On Oct. 21, 2021, the ACMA blocked five additional sites, adding them to its growing blacklist.

The blacklist is now hundreds of websites long, and while many of the blocked sites were marginal at best, a few of the most legitimate brands, like Ignition Poker, have unfortunately been included in these bans. However, players have still been able to play at Ignition since it utilizes numerous domains in an effort to circumvent the ACMA and offer fair gaming to the citizens of Australia. It is almost impossible for the ACMA to keep up with the speed at which sites can create new domains.

The ACMA has also targeted affiliate websites on occasion, attempting to stop certain websites from simply advertising gambling.

The Effectiveness of the ACMA's Tactics

The ACMA has been ramping up its enforcement over the recent years as we have discussed, but the question remains, are its tactics working? The ACMA has been blocking sites since 2019, and in late 2020, numerous sites were banned and added to the blacklist. With all of this supposed enforcement, it is still tough to say whether or not the ACMA has been successful in reaching its goals.

One year after the Gambling Act 2001 was amended, the ACMA published a report saying it was pleased with how things were proceeding, but many have remained skeptical. Although the enforcement methods have certainly yielded results with numerous casinos being banned or blacklisted, it appears the enforcement may be having unintended consequences.

By removing trusted and longstanding operators from the Australian market, it has allowed seemingly shady organizations to take their place. Alternate sites appear to have picked up the business and now Australian casino and poker players may be put at risk by being diverted to inferior gaming sites.

Playing in Australia is Still an Option

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Although the Australian online gambling landscape has certainly suffered a bit due to the recent enforcement, there are still plenty of options available for Australians who wish to gamble online. The ACMA's heavy-handed tactics have had some success, but sites have created new domain names to circumvent the bans. Players have often resorted to using VPNs and alternate DNS servers in an effort to play online.

Poker enthusiasts can check out this guide to playing online poker in Australia to learn which sites are reliable and accessible in 2022. If you'd like to learn more about the legal aspects of Australian online poker and the ACMA, feel free to check out this page dedicated to the legality of playing online poker in Australia.

There are also other types of gambling available like slots and table games, but with all of the recent changes, it can be difficult to know where and how to play safely. Joe Fortune is a prominent and trusted Australian gaming operator offering numerous casino games and bonuses. Please feel free to check out a detailed Joe Fortune casino review to learn all about this reputable casino site.