UK National Lottery operator Camelot fined £1.15m


uk-gambling-commission-camelot-penalty-national-lotteryThe UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has hit National Lottery operator Camelot with a £1.15m penalty for “sufficiently serious” control and governance failings.

On Thursday, the UKGC announced the results of an investigation it launched in December 2016 after identifying multiple failings at Camelot, including that year’s launch of a wonky mobile app that incorrectly informed players that their winning tickets were losers.

The UKGC paused its probe in February 2017 in order to give Camelot time to implement the company’s new Operational Excellence Program. The probe was renewed that November and expanded to include “other controls-related failures that had emerged subsequent to the start of the investigation.”

The UKGC ultimately determined that the mobile app cockup, the online publication of incomplete Lotto results, direct debit instruction failure in May 2016 that temporarily prevented processing of lotto sales, plus failings in both security measures and Post Office control, warranted the imposition of a financial penalty.

Camelot “engaged positively” with the UKGC during the probe and the regulator praised the work the operator has done “to update and enhance its procedures and controls to mitigate the risk of further issues.

This is far from Camelot’s first trip to the UKGC’s doghouse. In December 2016, Camelot paid a £3m penalty for paying out on a fraudulent jackpot claim. The operator was also penalized £300k in July of that year for posting incorrect Lotto results, and was hit with a £100k fine in August 2014 for incorrectly calculating a jackpot prize amount.

In other lotteries behaving badly news, this week saw the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) chastise online lottery betting operator (formerly World Lottery Club) for running an ad that generated two specific complaints.

The ASA ultimately found that the LottoGo ad failed to specify that customers would be betting on international lottery results rather than participating directly in lottery draws. Fellow lottery betting operator Lottoland was fined £150k by the UKGC last year for similar infractions.

The ASA also took issue with LottoGo’s promotion of the size of US Powerball jackpots, concluding that the ad was misleading for failing to specify that the advertised prizes were “subject to significant deductions which might reduce them by nearly half.” The ASA spanked Lottoland for similar omissions in July.