As readers may be aware, one of the policy commitments made by Commonwealth, state and territory governments in 2018 in connection with the adoption of the National Consumer Protection Framework (the NCPF) was to review the customer verification period (being the time that a wagering services provider has in which to verify a customer’s identity if they are to be able to continue using a wagering account) with a view to further reducing the period from the current 14 days to 72 hours.
That review process has recently progressed and change is now on the horizon.
For example, the Northern Territory Racing Commission has advised Northern Territory sports bookmaking licensees that, following a recent Commission meeting, the Commission has reaffirmed its position that reducing the customer verification period is an important consumer protection measure and that it would like operators to prevent new customers from commencing any betting activities (including depositing) until after the customer verification process has been satisfactorily completed. This change goes further than the NCPF commitment and aligns with the position in the United Kingdom whereby no wagering is permitted until customer verification has successfully been completed.
What do the changes mean for operators?
Northern Territory licensees have until 31 January 2022 to provide feedback on the proposal to the Commission. Subject to that feedback, the Commission has foreshadowed that licence changes to implement the change will be effective from 1 July 2022.
In readiness for the change, operators should assess the implications for their AML/CTF Programs, terms and conditions and systems and procedures (including staff training).
Please don’t hesitate to contact Julian, Dan or Alex if you would like to discuss this further.