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Reminder to licensees regarding white label gambling websites

The Gambling Commission is reminding remote operating licence holders of their obligations when operating gambling websites, including white labelled sites.

The responsibility for compliance sits with the licence holder and cannot be transferred to any other party. Failure to ensure that at all times:

may bring into question the suitability of an operator to hold a licence.

Licensees must know their customers and be able to demonstrate knowledge, oversight and proactive interactions where appropriate. Any interventions must be completed in a timely manner.

SRCP 1.1.2 - Responsibility for third parties, makes clear that licensees are responsible for the third parties that they contract with. It also requires licensees to ensure that any contracted third parties conduct themselves in so far as they carry out activities on behalf of the licensee as if they were bound by the same licence conditions and subject to the same codes of practice as the licensee.

The Commission expects that licensees will obtain the necessary assurance by conducting adequate due diligence on the third party to ensure (amongst other things) that they are competent and reliable. Any licensee that relies on a third party to conduct any aspect of the licensee’s business related to the licensed activities must ensure it has sufficient oversight and controls in place to ensure that all activities are carried out in accordance with the LCCP, notably, but not exclusively, social responsibility and anti-money laundering requirements.

Failure to maintain adequate control of third parties can result in regulatory action including suspension or the loss of the operating licence.

Finally – operators are aware that a licence is required to provide facilities for gambling (unless a specified exemption applies). Operators must ensure that their arrangements with third parties do not result in an offence under section 33 of the Gambling Act 2005. 

The Commission intends to publish further guidance in due course.