The UK Gambling Commission Fines Online Casino Gaming Provider Intouch Games

The UK Gambling Commission has announced its decision to impose a substantial fine on UK online casino gaming provider Intouch Games due to the company not meeting the required standard in relation to social responsibility and money laundering regulations.

According to the findings of the UK Gambling Commission, Intouch Gaming could improve their operations and policies in several aspects. In one instance, the Commission found that the company waited for 7 weeks before engaging with a bettor who had been flagged by the system for their extended and erratic betting. On another occasion, a customer who registered on the website and stated that they earn £6,000 a month was not subjected to source of funds verifications until they were flagged by the company’s system for betting during unsociable hours.

The Gambling Commission also pointed out that the anti-money laundering practices of the company did not meet the required standard. Intouch Games was found not to have appropriate procedures, controls, and policies in place. It was also established that the company could do more in terms of considering and implementing the risk assessment and guidance maintained by the UK Gambling Commission in relation to the prevention of money laundering and financing of crime / terrorism.

The substantive fine of €6.9m (£6.1m) is the third large fine imposed to the company in the last 4 years for similar reasons. In 2019, Intouch Games reached a settlement with the UK Gambling Commissions and paid €2.5m (£2.2m). In 2021, the Commission imposed a fine of €3.8m (£3.4) and an official warning.

Intouch Games was founded in 2001 in the West Midlands, UK and initially started as a manufacturer and operator of leisure machines, which it supplied to pubs and bookmakers. In 2006, the company expanded their entertainment services with a digital MP3 jukebox, which was an instant success with several major pub operators. This allowed the company to expand further, and venture into the online gaming business, opening their flagship brand mFortune in 2007. In 2010, after being largely successful with mFortune, the company launched their online gaming and casino services for mobile telephone bettors and introduced a second brand, PocketWin. Intouch Games continued to grow and expand, and in 2023 it operates 8 casino brands, including Dr Slot, Mr Spin, Cashmo, Casino2020, BonusBoss, and Jammy Monkey. It now employs over 500 people in its offices in the UK, Romania, and Taiwan.

Speaking about the fine imposed on Intouch Games, UK Gambling Commission Executive Director of Operations Kay Roberts said:

“Considering this operator’s history of failings we expected to see significant improvement when we carried out our planned compliance assessment. Disappointingly, although many improvements had been made, there was still more to do. This £6.1 million fine shows that we will take escalating enforcement action where failures are repeated and all licensees should be acutely aware of this.”

This statement comes following a series of announcements of fines and enforcement action by the Gambling Commission in the UK. Last week, it was revealed that sports betting provider TonyBet will have to pay a fine of around €500,000 for similar issues. Furthermore, the Commission reached a settlement with Vivaro Limited (vbet) for €385,000, again in relation to issues with their responsible gambling practices.

While the above occasions where Intouch Games did not meet the required standard of the Commission are extreme examples of problems with their practices, it is clear that the gaming provider could do more to safeguard its customers and ensure safe and responsible gaming. The company does not offer online gaming and casino services in Ireland. On the other hand, has prepared a Full List of Irish Online Casinos for 2023, with a large number of operators and providers on it. For those interested to try online gaming, the list provides reviews of these casinos and an overview of their features, benefits, and current introductory offer. A good example of such a casino is BetVictor, with an excellent introductory offer of “Get 100% up to €300”.

Meanwhile, UK betting and gaming industry experts and analyst have suggested that the recent announcements by the Gambling Commission may only be the beginning of stricter enforcement action. With the imminent publication of the White Paper on gambling, expected in February 2023, the industry is expecting a number of changes in regulation, rules and standards. These changes will aim to further minimise the potential harm of gambling to vulnerable bettors, and improve risk assessment and prevention techniques for money laundering and the funding of crime.