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Netherlands launches digital resilience campaign amid gambling concerns

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In response to concerns about crimes related to gambling online, the Dutch government will launch a campaign against digital fraud.

Franc Weerwind announced that the Netherlands Minister for Legal Protection, Franc, would launch a campaign to fight fraud in online gambling.

Weerwind explains the reasoning behind the campaign as a response to the concerns expressed by other parliamentarians about match-fixing on social media.

Weerwind stated that the initial target group for this campaign is young people. Messages will be used to help young people identify scams, and offer that seem too good-to-be true.

Minister was answering questions by MPs from SP, CDA, and Christian Union about an AD report which claimed that Telegram influencers defrauded victims out of thousands of Euros via Telegram.

Weerwind stated that there were no indications that young people who are targeted have been involved in match fixing or that sporting events themselves had been fixed. He expressed concern about fraudsters targeting vulnerable individuals, including the youth.

Weerwind said that it was “undesirable”, for influencers, to promote risky gambling games. He said that it is against the law for gambling companies to use role models who appeal to youth to promote their products.

Weerwind wrote: “Fraud, and the incitement of criminal behavior is both harmful and punishable.” In this instance, it would be under the pretext of “making fast money by sports betting”. Scammers sell the so-called “manipulated” results on Telegram, and they are paid in cryptocurrency.

People are getting scammed. “Citizens can prevent online fraud by being aware of and recognizing scams.”

Social problems associated with gambling in the Netherlands

Weerwind has responded with caution to claims that legalising online gambling created social problems or exacerbated existing ones. He did not want to make any prejudgments about the review of the Remote Gaming Act 2024.

He continued: “I will continue making adjustments to the legal frameworks that I have been given in the last period.” As an example, I banned role models from 30 June 2022 onwards and non-targeted online gambling advertising as of July 1, 2023. “Addiction prevention is at the heart of my policies.”

In early 2018, the Dutch government announced that it would introduce new regulations to help improve prevention of addiction in 2024. The government admitted that the system was flawed.

The Dutch Gambling Regulator, KSA is about to start work on an initiative that will see how best to increase the brand awareness of Cruks, a self-exclusion services, among various target groups.

A programme, for example, identifies risky and problematic gambling behavior among young adults. It then provides advice on how to avoid it. The Trimbos Institute is a specialist on addiction and will deliver the programme in schools starting in 2024.

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