Lotteritilsynet, the gambling regulator of Norway, has confirmed that the amendments to the payments ban will come into effect on January 1, 2020.
A ban on payments to unlicensed gambling operators was introduced in 2010, but Lotteritilsynet has estimated that approximately NOK6bn ($659.9m) is still spent each year with such companies.
The regulator said amendments to the initial ban mean it will have the power to request blocks for transactions based on company names and related to certain account numbers, as well as make decisions regarding an operator or other payment intermediaries.
“The foundation of the Norwegian gambling model is to help protect vulnerable groups from becoming gambling addicts. Good public control of gambling offsets both crime and gambling addiction. We see the effect of work we are doing today, but the purpose of the changes is to make the payment service ban more effective. This means we can, to a greater extent, prevent gaming companies from accepting deposits from Norwegian players,” Lotteritilsynet lawyer and advisor, Gram Skår, said.
The changes will come after Lotteritilsynet in the autumn was contacted by a number of players over complaints related to dealings with unlicensed brands. The regulator estimated that around 250,000 Norwegians gamble with these operators.