Australia cracks down on online gambling with crypto, credit card ban

To protect its citizens from wasting money that they don’t have, the Australian government implemented a ban on using crypto and credit cards for online gambling.

On June 11, The Canberra Times reported that Australia started to prohibit digital currency and credit card use for online gambling platforms.

The government announced that companies failing to comply with the new rules could face fines of up to approximately 234,750 Australian dollars ($155,000).

The rules include credit cards linked to digital wallets, cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (BTC) and other new forms of credit.

Australia bans crypto use in gambling

The new rules for online betting align with Australia’s laws on land-based gambling. However, there are exceptions, like online lottery payments, which still allow credit cards.

Kai Cantwell, the CEO of Responsible Wagering Australia, an independent organization for Australian-licensed gambling service providers, believes that the move makes it easier for people to control themselves. He said:

“This is an important measure to protect customers, making it easier for people to stay in control of their own gambling behavior.”

The executive also urged the government to extend the ban to exempt gambling forms. Cantwell believes that if protection measures aren’t consistent across all forms of gambling, people will “move to less-regulated types of gambling, where they are more at risk of harm.”

The gambling industry also already received a six-month transition period, and the full ban was enacted on June 11. The country’s communications watchdog has been empowered to enforce the new restrictions.

Related: Australian MP says the country needs blockchain ‘more than ever’

Crypto and gambling

Crypto users are known to gamble on a wide range of things, from the newest memecoins to landmark regulatory decisions like the approvals of spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs). On Jan. 11, users of the betting platform Polymarket gambled $12 million on the outcome of the ETF approvals.

Apart from the spot Bitcoin ETF decision in the United States, crypto users also gambled on the decision outcome for spot Ether ETFs. In March, bets on the ETH ETF decision reached $2.4 million. The bet was resolved when the ETF received official approval on May 23.

While crypto users make serious decisions, they also make frivolous bets, such as predicting how many times billionaire Elon Musk will post or guessing the temperature increase in May.

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