Kansspelautoriteit (KSA) the Netherlands gambling authority has issued a ‘consumer warning’ that soon illegal/unlicensed websites will no longer be available to access.
The warning comes as KSA steps up its enforcement against illegal operators to safeguard Dutch gambling’s ‘legal offer’ provided under the ‘Play Safe’ mandate of the KOA Regime.
Having launched the KOA Regime on 1 October, KSA swiftly announced that it would be taking drastic steps to block illegal operators from targeting Dutch consumers – including IP and payment blocks and a significant increase of fines and penalties.
KSA disclosed that it was closely monitoring 25 illegal websites that had been ordered to cease all Dutch market operations. Furthermore, the blackout rules have been applied to all operators waiting for KSA to approve their KOA Regime licences.
The official launch of the Dutch online gambling regime marketplace saw KSA grant 10 KOA licences to foreign and domestic operators, below the 28 incumbents that were expected to participate in the marketplace.
KSA judged a number of high-profile operators to have failed its ‘cooling-off command’ in which KOA applicants had to ensure no marketing and engagement with Dutch customers as they awaited licensing.
Failed applicants included Kindred Group, Betsson, Entain and LeoVegas – operators who have chosen to observe KSA pre-market commands with a view to securing KOA licences by April of this year.
Further Dutch regulatory developments saw KSA move to new offices in the Hague this month. The regulator has doubled its headcount, expanding its compliance and enforcement units monitoring Dutch online gambling.