The new initiative will run through the first quarter of 2016 with a focus on serious issues involved with illegal gambling. The campaign will also serve as a warning to players as well as operators of the penalties in store for them is the government takes action against them.
“We’ve been tracking the incidence of illegal and unregulated online gambling as an industry and are very concerned at the growth in usage and operations which are targeting unsuspecting South African players,” said, Themba Ngobese, chief executive officer of CASA. “It may all seem like harmless fun to gamble online, but players are completely unprotected and operators are not registered or regulated to run a business in our country.”
Players participating in illegal online gambling and operators offering illegal services face a R10 million fine or 10 years in prison.
“Players need to be warned that if they win online, firstly there is no legislation or guarantee that the operator will pay at all; and secondly any winnings will be forfeited by your credit card company to the state,” Ngobese said.
“It is extremely concerning to see numerous websites which blatantly use the South African flag on their home page and state they accept South African Rands (ZAR) and are ‘verified’, when it’s all completely illegal. They are luring unsuspecting players to spend and lose their hard-earned money offshore with no protection to players and tax return back into our country.”
Citizens are urged to contact their provincial gambling board with any information or email firstname.lastname@example.org.