Australia Bans Credit Cards in Online Casinos

Within a few months, Australia will ban the use of credit cards for online gambling. The Australian government has decided to introduce new legislation, following recommendations from a parliamentary inquiry. A recent study found that 20% of all online gambling deposits in Australia are made with credit cards. 

Michelle Rowland, Australia’s Minister of Communications, announced the ban on the use of credit cards for online gambling purposes. The government of Prime Minister Anthony Albanese came to this decision to protect vulnerable players from gambling-related harm.

The ban on the use of credit cards will apply to all licensed online casinos in Australia. A ban of credit cards at land-based casinos in the country has already been put into place. By introducing the ban in the online sector, the government implements the recommendations of the November 2021 Parliamentary Joint Committee on Corporations and Financial Services.

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BIN Blocking

The announcement states that stakeholders will soon be informed about the new legislation and the technical implementation. Online casinos can use bank identification numbers (BINs) to recognise and block a credit card payment.

“BIN blocking has been used successfully by Australian casinos and poker machine locations to stop credit card withdrawals from ATMs, and was used in the UK to introduce the ban on credit cards for online gambling.”

Anthony Albanese, Prime Minister of Australia

Response to Credit Card ban in Australia

Rowland commented in the announcement of the ban:

“It’s as simple as that: people shouldn’t gamble with money they don’t have. Protecting Australians from gambling harm is a key priority for the government. A ban on the use of credit cards for online gambling will help protect vulnerable Australians and their loved ones.”

She added:

“Today’s announcement complements other initiatives the government is currently taking to mitigate damage, such as the introduction of the national self-exclusion registry, BetStop, and the rating reform to address gambling-like features of computer games. ”

Michelle Rowland, Minister of Communications

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She also commented:

“The Labor government wants to create a better Australia. Minimising the damage caused by problematic online betting is an important part of achieving that goal. Importantly, minimising this damage is not a matter of set-and-forget. Another positive step is that online gambling is being aligned with land-based gambling, where no credit cards can be used. Our government is very determined to take action in this area. As a result we’ve introduced new taglines, we’re introducing BetStop and now with this latest measure we’re taking further action to help Australians who are vulnerable to harmful online gambling. We are now looking at the next step, together with our colleagues in the states and regions.”

Amanda Rishworth, Minister for Social Services

Another parliamentary inquiry into the relation between gambling and credit cards under the previous Coalition government recommended in 2021 that the government “ban online gambling service providers of wagering, (but not lotteries) from accepting credit cards payments, including digital wallets”. Labor’s proposal would therefore omit lotteries from the ban because “they are known to present a low-risk to gambling harm”.

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