The Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission (VGCCC) has directed Tabcorp, a major gambling operator in Victoria, Australia, to make changes to the majority of its Electronic Betting Terminals (EBTs). The regulator has requested that approximately 70% of Tabcorp’s 1,800 EBTs across the state be made cashless. This means that visitors will need to collect a voucher from the betting venue’s counter in order to use these machines. Additionally, customers who appear to be under the age of 25 must undergo ID verification before engaging in any betting activities.
The decision to make these changes comes after several incidents involving minors gambling on EBTs were uncovered. The VGCCC aims to protect underage individuals from gambling and gambling-related harm, as well as to strengthen monitoring and efforts against money laundering by making a majority of Tabcorp’s EBTs cashless.
In addition to the cashless requirement, the VGCCC has also directed Tabcorp to implement a new “mystery shopper” program to ensure that the company’s venues comply with ID checking requirements. Venues that fail to comply may face penalties, including the shift of all EBTs to cashless mode for a period of six months.
It’s worth noting that EBTs located near the venue’s counter will not be affected by the cashless change, but they will need to be within five meters and in the line of sight of the counter to accept cash bets.
The VGCCC’s decision to issue these directives comes after the regulator filed charges against Tabcorp and eight venues over alleged breaches of the Gambling Regulation Act 2003 related to allowing minors to gamble. VGCCC CEO Annette Kimmitt emphasized the importance of protecting the community, especially children, from gambling harm and stressed the need for tougher actions to prevent minors from gambling.
Kimmitt explained that the directives for Tabcorp were prompted by a growing number of breaches within the gambling sector and emphasized the need for venue staff to take their responsibilities seriously in protecting minors from gambling. The VGCCC will continue to monitor Tabcorp’s compliance and support measures that obstruct minors from gambling.