Strengthening the regulator’s powers to deal with illegal online casinos

The National Gaming Authority (ANJ), France’s unified gaming regulatory body, now has greater powers. Indeed, the ANJ is now able to directly order Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and search engine operators to block websites belonging to unauthorized operators in the country.

National Gaming Authority stronger than ever in 2022?

Earlier this year, the government granted the NJA the right to take drastic measures against illegal online gambling operators targeting the country. In other words: any site that does not have a license is not welcome and the regulator can now more easily remove it from the market.

It should be remembered that previously, the French gaming regulatory authorities – unified under the name ANJ – could intervene when they discovered a web platform operating without a French license. However, they could not shut down the offending site unless they went through a lot of red tape.

Now, the ANJ’s powers, which stem from changes to the online gambling law and a decree on gambling-related commercial communications published on November 04, 2020, are strengthened. In order to be blocked, the ANJ no longer has to demonstrate that a suspicious site is targeting French Internet users. It is now sufficient that the said site constitutes a “simple” threat for the French online gaming market.

New regulation tackles fragmented environment

According to ANJ President Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, France’s new online casino gaming regulations offer greater flexibility for the regulator on the legal front. ” The NJA has more flexible legal tools than before, which are suited to a highly fragmented digital world “, justifies the interested party.

It should be noted that the update of the law on online gambling also aims to reform the use of advertising by operators, which is now ” (…) prohibited when it incites, trivializes or promotes excessive gambling “. In addition, the ANJ, using the exact terms of the Executive Order, states that gambling advertising may not contain ” scenes of excitement or disproportionate intensity of emotion, or scenes that equate gambling with achievement “.

Finally, the CNA provided suggestions for reduce advertising pressure on the different communication spaces (television, radio and Internet). The French regulator recommends a maximum of three commercials for all operators combined during each break between one or more programs broadcast on TV or radio. On websites and social media, the ANJ suggests a maximum of three commercials per day and per medium.

Kayleigh Williams