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Players can now exclude themselves from online betting platforms

sport betting

A new tool, launched on Tuesday, will allow players the opportunity to control their betting activity and self-exclude, either temporarily or indefinitely, from all licensed online betting companies in Cyprus.

President of the National Betting Authority Ioanna Fiakkou said based on the data of the National Self-Exclusion Platform, between two and three per cent of players are expected to utilise the newly-created platform right from its launch.

“The National Self-Exclusion Platform is an important tool for promoting healthy betting behaviour and protecting vulnerable groups,” Fiakkou said.

She said the platform only applies to online betting websites holding a Class B licence from the authority. She mentioned that the initiative is part of a strategic pursuit to protect betters.

“This initiative reflects the authority’s commitment to player protection and to creating a sustainable and fair gaming environment,” she said, adding that according to a 2023 survey, the number of players addicted to betting activities accounts for 1.5 per cent of the population.

Fiakkou stressed the need for collaboration from all stakeholders, such as mental health services and licensed treatment centres in Cyprus, “as their encouragement would push players in need of help to register on the platform and excluding themselves from betting, even indefinitely, if necessary.”

She then called on athletes to join the platform as an additional tool to prevent match fixing.

“We are taking significant steps towards achieving the goals set through the Safer Gaming Strategy, namely strengthening public protective factors and contributing to reducing players’ vulnerability, as well as enhancing the sustainability of the betting sector,” she said, explaining that similar platforms operate in other EU countries.

Responding to a question about cooperation with the Cyprus Football Association and other sports federations, Fiakkou said the authority would propose “registering athletes on the platform to prevent them from participating in betting activities in the category they compete in.”

“Each player can self-exclude from all betting service providers by registering at www.exclusion.cy,” head of the Safe Game Division Christina Christophorou said, adding that the registration involves entering personal details.

Additionally, she stated that the platform provides the option for temporary suspension, long-term suspension or indefinite self-exclusion.

During self-exclusion periods, players cannot create a new account with any betting company and can only access their account to withdraw funds,” she said.

Christophorou also explained that temporary suspension ranges from 24 hours to three months, while long-term suspension lasts from six months to indefinitely.

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