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Anton Kuchukhidze: UGC starts to actively fight illegal gambling advertising

While most legal gambling operators are actively helping the country fight against russia, illegal operators continue to operate outside the law. In particular, the amount of illegal gambling advertisements online and on the streets of Ukrainian cities has significantly increased. To deal with this issue and stop the distribution of such advertising, the Ukrainian Gambling Council has launched a hotline.

In addition to the new challenges facing legal gambling due to war, the gambling market is also affected by traditional constraints. One of these constraints is illegal gambling advertising spreading in Ukraine’s information space.

Today, domestic legislation in gambling advertising is still accumulating practical cases. In October 2021, legal gambling operators that are members of the Ukrainian Gambling Council, which is more than 80% of Ukraine’s legal gambling representatives, signed the Memorandum on Gambling Advertising. This document prohibits gambling advertising for persons under the age of 21, regulates the content of the advertising so it doesn’t deceive gamblers, obliges operators to warn gamblers about gambling addiction in their advertisements, etc.

The memorandum has become a gentleman’s agreement, a collection of rules guiding legal operators when creating and placing online and offline gambling advertising. Though this document does not have statutory force, the failure to take it into account by some market players resulted in numerous negative implications, such as wasted money on advertising and, as a consequence, giving up on the latter.

While UGC members effectively follow the rules established in the Memorandum, even in a challenging military context, illegal and some legal gambling representatives actively disseminate illegal online and offline advertising. It misleads gamblers, as well as targets people under the age of 21, prohibited from gambling under Ukrainian law.

To combat illegal gambling advertising, UGC lawyers have launched a hotline to document all cases of such advertising. So if you or your child receives an advertisement offering to gamble online or in the gambling hall in messengers or on websites, please contact us. Our lawyers will prepare requests to all relevant authorities to protect your rights as a consumer and hold illegal operators accountable.

I also call on relevant organizations and experts representing gambling and advertising markets to inform us if you see illegal gambling advertising. Only together can we defeat illegal operators and secure gamblers.

Creating a civilized gambling market in Ukraine is not an easy task. However, it can be achieved if everyone does their part. That is why do not hesitate and contact the UGC hotline. Let us fight against illegal advertising together!

Anton Kuchukhidze, Chairman of the Ukrainian Gambling Council, exclusively for the Ukrainian News


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