William Hill gets hit with a £19.2million penalty
The fine was imposed after an investigation found that a new customer had bet £23,000 in just 20 minutes without any safeguards being put in place. This is the largest penalty ever issued by the commission for failures related to preventing issues related to problem gambling.April 15, 2023 in Gambling Industry
William Hill, one of the world's biggest bookmakers, has been fined £19.2million by the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) for failing to protect a vulnerable customer.
The fine was imposed after an investigation found that a new customer had bet £23,000 in just 20 minutes without any safeguards being put in place. This is the largest penalty ever issued by the commission for failures related to preventing gambling harm.
The investigation found that William Hill (owned by 888 Group) should have done more to identify and protect this player from potential risks associated with problem gambling. The company failed to undertake appropriate affordability checks or interact with the customer about their behaviour despite them exhibiting signs of problem gambling such as making large deposits and wagers at high stakes.
This is the largest penalty ever issued by the UKGC and it highlights how important it is for licensed operators to take responsibility for making sure that players are safe when using their services.
This penalty further demonstrates that the UKGC is taking action against operators who fail to implement effective policies and procedures to protect customers from gambling-related harm.
The commission expects operators to have robust systems in place which identify and take appropriate action when they become aware of any customer behaviour which could indicate problem gambling.
William Hill has since taken steps to address the shortcomings identified by this investigation, including additional training for staff, enhanced customer interaction processes and improved affordability checks. This shows that operators can take positive action to ensure their customers are protected from potential harm caused by gambling.
The UKGC has sent a strong signal with this penalty, demonstrating its commitment to protecting vulnerable customers from the dangers of problem gambling – no matter which operator or platform they choose. The penalty should also serve as a warning for other operators about the importance of taking their customer’s safety seriously.