SkillOnNet have been charged a payment in lieu of financial penalties of PS305.150 by the UK Gambling Commission for social responsibility infractions and anti-money laundering.
SkillOnNet, which operates 50 websites of which 15 via white label arrangements like gentingcasino.com playtoro.com slotstars.com is the latest of a series of companies targeted by the UKGC to license branches.
After the White Paper was published the regulator continued to enforce regulatory actions to punish non-compliant operators . Between January 2022 and April 2023, PS76m were spent on regulatory enforcement.
The UKGC stated that SkillOnNet had failed to stop gambling being associated or used as a means of crime. It also said that it was not doing enough to make sure that the practice was conducted openly, fairly, and to protect those who are vulnerable from harm.
The regulator stated that Skill on Net did not have adequate policies, procedures, and controls in place to ensure compliance with AML obligations and the responsibility of responsible gambling, and also had ‘weaknesses’ in its implementation in the latter case.
SkillOnNet, for example, allowed its customers to deposit more than twice the PS2,000 cap the company had in place. This was based on the assumption that customers were “recycling” or “restaking” their winnings.
Ineffective interactions further exacerbated the failure to identify at-risk clients and their associated markers of harm. The UKGC claims that the interactions were not able to capture the information needed for a risk assessment.
SkillOnNet failed to properly use the account information that the regulator made available.
A requirement that a nominated official submit an annual report about AML was not adhered to. Verbal comments and monetary thresholds were over-relied upon.
Skill on Net was accused of not considering payments from third parties, such as organised crime groups or mule accounts. They also failed to take into account information on the risks of money laundering and terrorist funding.
The UKGC found failings in SkillOnNet after two periods with special measures. However, the regulator credited the steps taken to rectify the breaches, as well as the acceptance of the failures, and the ‘timely’ action.
SkillOnNet has agreed to pay an additional PS9,079 for the investigation costs and to have a third party audit. The PS305150 chosen by the Commission is to be used as a fund to support social responsibility.