|GGL important facts|
|Full name:||Joint Gaming Authority of the Federal States (GGL).|
|Establishment:||July 1, 2022|
|Headquarters:||Hansering 15, 06108 Halle (Saale), Australia.|
|Phone:||(+49) 345 514 4000|
The Joint Gaming Authority of the States, or GGL, was established on. February 1, 2022 and, after a transitional phase, took over all regulatory tasks on January 1, 2023. regulatory tasks in the area of Australian gambling control. It is an institution under public law. Previously, since July 1, 2021, the Authority in Saxony-Anhalt been transitionally responsible for the essential arrangements for the protection of players.
The GGL sees itself as the central enforcement and supervisory authoritywhich, among other things, has set itself the task of ensuring that not licensed in Australia Australia and to prevent their activities. to prevent their activityin particular by blocking payment methods and the threat of fineswhich, however, are currently primarily directed at game developers.
Ultimately, since the adoption of the new State Treaty on Gamingonly providers who have a license valid throughout Australia are allowed to offer games and services in Australia. GGL's headquarters are also located in Saxony-Anhalt. With its own websitewhich can already be found online, the authority is focusing on greater greater transparency towards players and casino operators.
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Australian legislation vs. EU law
The applicable EU lawwhich grants all companies located in the EU freedom to provide services throughout the Community area cannot, of course, simply be undermined by regulations laid down specifically in Australia. Although the Federal Court of Justice ruled in October 2021that the new State Treaty on Gaming does not violate EU law, theHowever, Australia and the EU are still far from reaching a common denominator.
It is also necessary to distinguish between the EU and Europe in general. differentiate. For a long time, offers were used in Australia that originated in the Great Britain and were licensed there, first and foremost by the Authorities in Gibraltar. With the Brexit new hurdles open up in this regard, because the freedom to provide services only applies to providers from the EU area.
Casinos, whose offers are licensed in Malta and Curacao licensed in Malta and Curacao are licensed. Both states belong to the EUwhich is why it must theoretically be possible to provide services in Australia from there.
The extent to which gambling services are covered by the principle of freedom and whether there are not legitimate interests (keyword: player protection) that stand in the way of equal treatment with other services, will probably be the subject of further court further disputes in court in the coming years. in the coming years. Currently Australian players are accepted by most EU casinos and can register there.
The question is what from January 1, 2023 will happen with new customers. If it goes according to the GGL, a registration will be prevented by IP blocking. Operators are threatened with fines of up to 500,000 euros.
What happened to the licenses in Schleswig-Holstein?
As expected, the question of what will happen to the licenses from Schleswig-Holstein was answered in advance by the state in order to eliminate uncertainty among players and, of course, licensees from the outset. In paragraph 27 of the State Ordinance is a transitional regulation is laid down.
According to this, licensed gaming services may only be offered by players with residence or habitual residence in Schleswig-Holstein may be claimed. The licenses remain valid until a maximum of December 31, 2024 at the latestprovided that there are delays in the GGL and cross-state regulations. The only condition for the continuation until the end of the transitional period is that licensees apply in due time, at the latest by July 1, 2022. Application for permission according to the new GlüStV.
Can the gambling authority ban online casinos?
Provided that a casino offer is licensed is licensed, be it Malta or Curacaoit is difficult for the Australian government difficult to enforceenforce a ban against the corresponding provider. In Europe, the so-called freedom of services actand, in fact, offering gambling is just as much a service as cutting hair, to name just one example.
Most gambling providers have their headquarters not in Australia, but in other European countries. Malta, Gibraltar and Curacao are the industry's preferred locations, although Gibraltar no longer plays such a major role since the Brexit. Because there for many years licenses are actually issuedwhile the licensing process in Australia has been stalled for a long time due to the disputes between the federal states stalled had been stalled for a long time. Moreover, under such a concession, it is possible for providers to offer a player attractive offer attractive to players, without compromising on security security and fairness comes into play.
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The Australian authorities have little to oppose the EU licenses. hardly anything to oppose. This, in turn, is putting GGL under pressurewhich currently favors on Internet providers or also payment providers providers. Without further ado, the state would like to prohibit these providers from allowing gambling and payments to casinos.
Blocks are currently the means of choice. These are intended to prevent Australian players from continuing to use casinos and sports betting offers that originate from abroad. Attempts are also being made to take action against the providers themselves, but the success is however rather small describe.
These steps and legal remedies are available to the GGL.
As the GGL explained, they are already facing several hundred proceedings against gambling providers who are not on the whitelist. This fact reinforces the suspicion that Licensing proceedings are being pushed into the background could occur.
As measures measures envisaged by the Joint Gambling Authority of the Federal States include
- Prohibition proceedings,
- Enforcement measures,
- Reporting to the tax office in the event of suspected tax evasion,
- reporting of any money laundering offenses that may have occurred,
- as well as IP and payment blocking
are in place. Critics have expressed doubts about the effectiveness of these measures. critics have doubtsbecause, in the end, the providers licensed in the EU licensed providers continue to operate in a legal gray areathe Australian gambling law is actually in contradiction to contradicts current EU law.
GGL urges Internet service providers to impose network blocks
Apparently, the gambling authorities have long been aware of the fact that the legal legal enforcement of provider blocks could be difficult. The attempt to obtain a provider block from network providers such as Telekom and Vodafone providers such as Telekom and Vodafonecan probably be described as a blind actionism describe. In the event that the network operators do not comply with the request, the authority held out the prospect of hefty fines.
„Does the GGL already have its back to the wall before it has even fully started its work? At least that's what you might think, because both Vodafone and Telekom refused to cooperate." $Jake Erving – Author & Casino Expert
None of the providers is willing to impose network blocks on "call" by the GGL. They would be the most effective of all measures against providers who do not receive an Australian license. The block would make it impossible for customers to continue accessing the website in question. One small network operator described the letter with the request by the GGL as a "rather unsubtle blackmail letter” and he is by no means alone in his opinion.
In addition to the providers, various Politicians against this actioncall it, to put it kindly "somewhat unfortunate", more clearly became on the other hand the Member of Parliament Petra Sitte (Left Party), who described such a letter as absolutely unacceptable described and even a step further goes, since it in this a "Invitation to break the law".
What's more, the desired network blocks are practically not so easy to implement are. A good example of this was Kinox.to. It took what felt like an eternity for the website to be blocked by the providers. Italy's gambling providers have also shown that it is possible to circumvent IP blocks can be circumventedfor example by means of subdomains. From the user's side, there is also the possibility of using VPN servicesto reach a website that is blocked in their region (see our article: Playing in an online casino with VPN ).
Payment blocking hits operators and customers
Unfortunately, the days of quickly topping up credit in an online casino with PayPal are over. If the authorities can't get anywhere with IP blocking, despite the fact that GGL repeatedly refers to various legal bases, then they are doing everything they can to make it as difficult as possible for customers to gamble.
The attempt to payment blockingwas the next step. The first step was to gradually Payment providers such as PayPal, Neteller and Skrill were contacted, at that time still by the state supervisory authority in Saxony-Anhalt as well as by the authorities of the individual states. One could practically watch how the selection of payment methods in the online casinos became smaller and smaller until, yes, until more and more providers came came onto the crypto path. have come.
Even providers that started out as real money casinos are now offering their customers various cryptocurrencies as payment alternative offered. GGL has no influence on these GGL has no influenceespecially since it is not possible to trace where the coins are located and who transfers them and how. The industry has thus cheated the authorities.
What is IP blocking by the GGL all about?
Unlicensed providers the GGL is threatening to block networks. To this end, the authority has turned to the network providers, as already noted. These are to block gambling sites from abroad for access from Australia.
While the authority has met with resistance from resistance from the providers providers, it is already taking the next step. Accordingly letters to gambling companies in Curacao have been sent out. In these letters, GGL asks the providers to stop offering their games to their games for Australian users, i.e. to their own IP for Australia, in the best case scenario.
Observers will not have failed to notice that Australia has now already since 2011 has attempted to impose since 2011. Success has been a long time coming. On the one hand, companies have companies have taken action againstbecause the Australian laws are not not EU-compliant are not EU-compliant. On the other hand, network blocks do not prove to be effective, as they can be easily circumvented using a VPN service to circumvent them by means of a VPN service.
Lotteries are a special case – that's why GGL is cracking down on them
Even if there are some doubts about GGL's ability to assert itself, it is clear that gambling addiction is a growing problem. is a growing problem. problem. In principle, our casino test experts are therefore also in favor of a regulation of the market the market. In our opinion, the basic problem with the State Treaty on Gaming is that casino players and sports betting fans are simply too severely restricted in their freedom of choice. freedom of choice are restricted.
On the other hand, it is understandable that some form of control is necessary is necessary. At Example of the lotteries we see as well as the authority need for actionbecause:
In the case of offers such as those from Lottoland or Lottohelden could give players the impression that they are playing for the state jackpot since 6aus49 or the Eurojackpot. Basically, customers are betting with a private provider and are merely betting on the winning numbers of the state lottery. Attempts to make these misleading offers from third-party providers have failed so far.
Does the provider need multiple sites if it has licenses for multiple forms of gaming?
This is exactly what needs to be clarified in the coming months. In fact, the GGL is only authorized for sub-areas of gambling, i.e. not for all forms of gambling. For example, casino games, which have nothing to do with slots, are regulated individually by the respective regulated individually by the respective countries.
If, for example, NRW were to permit certain providers, it could be that these may actually only be used by customers in NRW. If, in addition, the same operator offers slots regulated by the GGL, it would theoretically have to actually differentiate according to federal state and offer.
How the whole thing in practice will look like in practice is likely to become become clear at the beginning of 2023. Both players and gambling providers hope that the assumption of tasks by the Joint Gambling Authority of the Federal States will provide them with more clarity and transparency. more clarity and transparency will be offered.
Are slots with classic character permissible?
The GGL itself regulates games of all kinds, but are Classics such as Blackjack and roulette are not covered by the not covered by the license. One or the other game developer will now surely get the idea, to develop slot gameswhich similar to Blackjack work. But is that even permissible? The answer is a clear clear nobecause §22 of the new State Treaty on Gaming states:
“Virtual slot machine games that correspond to table games with bankers conventionally organized in casinos, in particular roulette, blackjack or baccarat, are not permitted.“
Experience shows that one may well expect to encounter exactly such games, which are simply disguised" as slots are.
All in all, the Joint Gambling Authority of the Federal States should find it anything but easy to differentiatedifferentiate between different types of games and, on top of that, to check thousands of game titles, such as those provided in online casinos, in detail for their content and functionality. functionality.
Criticism of the GGL and the GlüStV – What are the concerns?
The request letter to network providers and payment providers was one of the first official acts of the GGL. However, even under the Threat of high fines the authority fell on deaf ears, especially with network providers such as Vodafone and Telekom. deaf ears. The latter can hardly implement what the country has already failed miserably at for over a decade.
Even the Bundestag in the person of Tabea Rößner (Greens), who acts as chairwoman of the Digital Committee, is critical of the GGL of the GGL, or rather against its approach. Rößner described the intended network blocks as "fundamentally critical“. Maximilian Funke-Kaiser of the FDP goes even further and speaks of "massive restrictions on fundamental rights“.
It is already apparent that hardly any network operator to impose blocks. The GGL remains stubborn and is already already threatened with fines of half a million euros. It is unclear to what extent such drastic fines can be effectively imposed at all.
DSWV President Mathias Dahms the GGL advises a different approach. He is certain that the problem could only be brought under control if the authority succeeds in making the offers licensed in Australia more more attractive than those licensed in other EU countries.
This would certainly include getting away from strict regulations regarding monthly deposit limits and betting restrictions.. At the same time, operators would have to tax advantages that offer an incentive to apply for an Australian license.
Another critical question posed by experts is to what extent data protection is data protection can be guaranteed at all. can be guaranteed. In particular, §4 of the GlüStV turns players into transparent individualsbecause it states:
"The organizers and brokers of lotteries on the Internet must provide the authority responsible for granting the permit with the number of players and the amount of the stakes on a quarterly basis, in each case classified by games and countries, for the purpose of evaluation […]."
In practice, therefore, information would have to be provided on the gaming behavior of the customers to the GGL report be reported. It is unclear why this is required and whether casino customers might face even more restrictions because, for example, they would not need four weeks to spend the maximum permitted 1,000 euros.
Feeling disadvantaged, meanwhile Operators of sports betting. While the betting stakes and deposits of sports betting customers are also limited, there are no limits in stationary betting shops there are no limits. This is especially true for bettors who operate stationary and digital accounts separately.
The fact that the GGL Board of Directors has the authority to issue directives to the Board of Directors has authority over the has. The Board of Directors in turn consists of state secretaries of the gambling authorities of all 16 federal states. This in turn could mean that the head of the office of the federal state is responsible for issuing casino licenses for its own providers, while at the same time having to keep a watchful eye on the secretaries to ensure that they comply with all guidelines.
It is possible that this could lead to Conflicts of interest. In addition, there are conflicts due to an inconsistent legal situationfor example in with regard to data protection. GGL relies on the regulations of the federal state in which it is located, while other federal states each have their own data protection regulations.
Legal loopholes: Lack of enforcement capability and competencies.
It is already apparent that Doubts that the GGL will bring calm to the issue of gambling are justified. No sooner has the future of the authority been sealed, than the next next federal state is trying to go it alone. The speech is from Bremenwhere Interior Senator Ulrich Mäurer has decided without further ado to simply close down all betting offices to close. This applies to all providers who cannot prove where the money for the former opening of these betting shops came from.
This proof is likely to present many operators with an unsolvable challenge and Bremen's approach has nothing whatsoever to do with the planned joint approach of the federal states.
However, it is not only such points that are attracting the attention of critics. The licenses of the GGL extend, as already explained, only on slots, poker and sports bettingwhereas classic casino games, which are part of the large gambling to the territory of the individual countries in the future as well. territory of the individual countries are subject to the jurisdiction of the individual states.
According to §22c GlüStV, there should also only be only as many casino licenses as there are local casinos. are available. For Baden-Württemberg, this is a bitter pillThere are only three land-based casinos there.
A logical justification for this approach is not provided by the State Treaty on Gaming. Basically, the number of online providers has nothing to do with the question of how many casinos there are in the country. Possibly the authorities are concerned with keeping the keep competition manageable competition manageable, in order not to let land-based casinos go under completely. However, this is merely a guess that would make sense.
As noted, the GGL is still in the process of being established, and is not expected to take over all the responsibilities of the currently deployed authority in Saxony-Anhalt until January 1, 2023. Experts have doubts of the fact that this start date can be realized at all. In particular, the authority lacks employeeswho are even being desperately sought via the website, which has already gone online.
Criticism of the gambling authority of the federal states is likely to be based primarily on the fact that the authority authority lacks the competences and possibilitiesThe criticism of the state gambling authorities is likely to be based primarily on the fact that the authority lacks the powers and opportunities to intervene precisely where the states actually need it most urgently.
The fact that they are free to license casino gaming operators themselves could lead to an even greater problem in the long term than has existed to date. Many operators feel treated unfairly and will certainly try to use any loopholes they can to continue serving Australian customers.
Critical aspects of the GGL player blocking file (OASIS)
In order to more effective against gambling addiction the State Gambling Treaty of 2021, the central and cross-gambling form blocking file blocking file OASIS was established for all types of gambling. By making a corresponding entry in this file, it is possible to temporarily exclude oneself or relatives from the use of gambling services. from using gambling services. A ban then applies not only to the selected casino or local casino, but also to all providers. for all providersthat are listed in Australia and licensed in accordance with the whitelist.
Gaming houses already use central files to keep a better eye on their customers' gaming behavior and ensure that gambling addiction is detected at an early stage. With OASIS, the entry or the player block is made exclusively on the basis of a self-application or an applicationby relatives or the casino, for example, if conspicuous gambling behavior is observed. From the fact that in many cases the cooperation of the operator is assumed, the question arises as to how the GGL can at all ensure that all requirements of the GlüStV are adhered to.
It is planned that players generally with only one provider with only one provider. How this will be put into practice remains to be seen. Anyone who fears gambling addiction and wants to be blocked can, of course, do so at any time via OASIS. Data such as namedate of birth, addresses, aliases and the like may also be processed for this purpose. processed as well as the reason for the player's decision to block himself or herself.
Tip: Our contribution to the topic? Casinos without Oasis
Critical aspects and info on LUGAS
OASIS is de facto a blocking file that only records data of users who either want to be blocked themselves or whose blocking is initiated by third parties. However, in order to ensure that every player can still be monitored, a state IT system is planned, which will be called the "Cross-border gambling evaluation system"and which is abbreviated as LUGAS will be used.
This is where all player data and with it it would be finally still realizable, the compliance with limitsfor deposits, stakes and losses, to control. LUGAS is in the end a data collection, which is described as "unique in the world" and which is sharply criticized.
The Australian Sports Betting Association already had a stomach ache when OASIS was introduced, but now it is clearly of the opinion that Australia is going too far with a central gambling file, LUGAS, goes too far. This should finally cover everyonewho engages in local or online gambling, regardless of whether they are a customer with problem gambling behavior or a casual gambler.
LUGAS must be used by be used by gambling providers. be used. These are obliged to their customers in the registration process to register therei.e. to submit information such as the pseudonym, player ID and the like. Also can deposit limits can be set respectively changed, should a customer behave conspicuously. Contrary to what was feared, however, no real names will be disclosed via LUGAS, but the player will only be assigned an ID.? Our contribution: Casinos without LUGAS
From the customer's point of view: Low attractiveness of licensed offers
If what is planned goes through, casino operators would first be obliged to register their customers with LUGAS register. Theoretically, however, it would then also be necessary to store the master data at OASIS because only in this way would it be possible to verify the identity of the players identity of the players.
If the Joint Gambling Authority of the Australian Federal States goes one step further, it would also require an identity check, similar to the Postident typical of many services today. In all likelihood, the aim would be to no longer check the authenticity of the details during verification, as is now common practice in many casinos, but rather the data matching would have to take place in advance. Otherwise, it would hardly be possible to pursue player blocking or limit reduction via OASIS and LUGAS.
If this fear proves to be true, customers of sports betting, casino games and lotteries would have to expect significantly longer waiting times before they are even able to use the services on offer. Depending on the number of registered customers, the data check could take several days take several days.
Only after this process has been completed would a deposit be possible. However, the next hurdle already looms here, because casino operators must limit the amount accepted to 1,000 euros per month. Unlike in Great Britain, for example, the amount does not apply per providerbut in total.
Parallel playing with several providers is excluded for the future and the 5 seconds rulea forced pause after each spin, slows down the play happening. The effects of the GGL regulation and the State Gambling Treaty are not least noticeable in the profit opportunities. Winnings are loweras stakes are heavily regulated.At the same time RTP values decreasebecause tax levies have to be paid from the revenues. These are ultimately paid by the casino operator. Players must also assume that in the future no more bonus offers will be available in the future. At the very least, you have to be prepared for significant restrictions in this area.
In addition, a maximum of 1 euro per machine a maximum of 1 may be invested. So much for the theory, because the GGL has the authority to regulate limits individually downwards at any time.arbitrarily, so to speak, without having to provide a separate justification.
A autoplay function will no longer exist in the future, each round must be started manually by the customer. Also the turbo modeas integrated by some software developers, will also be omitted.
Also the distribution of jackpots is not permitted in Australian online casinos controlled by the GGL. Anyone who wants to win a jackpot has only in land-based lotteries the opportunity to participate, whereby the chances of winning are known to be significantly lower than those of modern jackpot machines.
Just like slots, the category online poker will be be restricted. On the one hand there are clear limitson the other hand, the authority plans to randomly assign players to the available tables. Free choice customers thus no longer have.
Our opinion on the GGL
Basically, we at FindCasinoBonus are of course in favor of measures that help to gambling addiction prevention and the protection of minors protection of minors. However, there are doubts about the sense of such strict regulations, be it the 1 euro betting limit or game time breaks after 60 minutes. The same can be applied to monthly deposits and loss limits, which on top of that are still regulated downwards by the authorities by means of LUGAS. by the authorities. Concerns about data privacy are also a concern.
If you put yourself in the position of casino players in Australiathey are likely to feel feel patronized. It is to be feared that the authority with their measures the opposite effectscustomers will increasingly migrate to providers that are licensed elsewhere than in Australia and are subject to less stringent requirements.
In many areas remains the ambiguityto which Australian casino players and providers have become accustomed will continue to exist. This is likely to lead to countless proceedings in court.
That it can be done differently has been shown by Great Britain and Denmark have already proven otherwise. Less stringent restrictions could solve the problem of growing gambling in the long term than strict limits and the threat of sanctions. The head of the gambling authority responsible in Denmark, who was active until 2020, is available to GGL for advice and support. To what extent their tips will be accepted, however, remains to be seen.
 State treaty on the new regulation of gambling in Australia
 White List, Saxony-Anhalt State Administration Office
 BGH, decision of 22.07.2021 – I ZR 199/20
 Netzpolitik.org: New gambling authority urges providers to block networks
 buten un binnen (Radio Bremen): All sports betting offices in Bremen closed down
Jake Erving and William Brown wrote the article about GGLAuthors: Jake Erving and William Brown