EGBA supports European Digital Identity scheme
The European Gaming and Betting Association believes the E-ID initiative would benefit gambling operators and customers.
Belgium.- The European Gaming and Betting Association (EGBA) has lent its support for the European Union’s plan for a harmonised European Digital Identity (E-ID).
The digital ID system will allow EU citizens to guard a range of data, such as name, date of birth, bank account numbers, driving licences and proof of Covid-19 vaccination status in a single electronic wallet.
Both public and private sector organisations, including gambling sites, would have to recognise the ID, which could begin to roll out as early as next year, with a target for 80 per cent of EU citizens to be using it by 2030.
The EGBA’s manager of EU affairs, Vasiliki Panousi, noted that this could offer benefits for gambling operators and customers, allowing easier, standardised procedures of age and identify verification and electronic signing.
Writing in the International Masters of Gaming Law Magazine, Panousi said: “Α standardised, pan-EU identity verification method would […] provide online gambling operators with a new, streamlined method for compliance with many different rules and help reduce administrative and compliance costs, in particular for those companies that operate across multiple member states.
“An EU-wide e-ID would strengthen existing processes to prevent minors from accessing online gambling and positively impact the EU’s fight against criminal and fraudulent activity.”
The E-ID would also allow self-excluded players to share their data on their self-exclusion in their E-ID wallet, although some have noted that they will need awareness of how to do this.
Panousi said: “It would also offer national gambling authorities a standardised tool to identify customers with a high degree of certainty and support an operator’s compliance in their jurisdiction.
“As well as streamlining the work of operators, an E-ID would also enhance the customer experience. In an ever-increasing era of online services, players would be able to verify their identities easily, with the click of a button.”
The EGBA has long pushed for more standardised regulation of consumer protection rules across the European Union, noting the great disparity in online gambling regulation across the bloc.
The group has welcomed the European Commission’s new anti-money laundering (AML) framework, saying it would lead to more consistency. Meanwhile, it’s raised concerns over a proposed ban on free bets in Ireland.
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