Bulgaria’s Commitment to Responsible Gambling: Over 24,000 Join Self-Exclusion Scheme
Bulgaria’s National Revenue Agency (NRA), the governing body for gambling regulation, has announced a significant milestone in responsible gambling efforts.
Since its relaunch in December last year, Bulgaria’s national gambling self-exclusion scheme has seen over 24,000 people voluntarily register, demonstrating a strong public response to the initiative. This significant participation marks a crucial step in promoting responsible gambling practices in the country.
The NRA’s restructured self-exclusion system, which was previously paused due to regulatory changes, now allows individuals to opt out of gambling activities for a minimum of two years. This can be done both in person at NRA offices and online, ensuring accessibility and ease for those seeking to limit their gambling activities.
This development is a testament to Bulgaria’s ongoing commitment to safeguarding its citizens against gambling-related harm, offering a proactive tool for individuals to manage their gambling habits responsibly.
Enhanced Operator Monitoring: Gambling operators have limited access to the self-exclusion register, enabling them to monitor their customer base effectively and identify individuals who have opted for self-exclusion.
Employment Restrictions and Penalties: In a notable regulatory move, the NRA has stipulated that self-excluded individuals cannot be employed in casinos or gaming halls, with potential fines up to BGN 20,000 (€10,000) for employers violating this rule.
Real-Time Data Exchange with Regulators: The NRA has introduced an API-based service, facilitating real-time data exchange between operators and the regulator. This technology enhances monitoring capabilities and regulatory compliance.
Enforcement Against Unlicensed Activity: As part of its crackdown on unlicensed gambling activities, the NRA blocked access to over 150 gambling websites in September. The majority of these sites were reportedly not licensed within the European Union, and the NRA has stated its intention to pursue court orders against ISPs if access to these sites remains open.
Bulgaria’s robust approach to gambling regulation, particularly through the successful implementation of its self-exclusion scheme, reflects the country’s dedication to promoting responsible gaming and player safety. By integrating technological advancements and enforcing strict regulatory measures, the NRA is setting a standard in the effective management and oversight of the gambling sector. These efforts not only protect individuals from gambling-related risks but also ensure a more secure and ethical gambling environment in Bulgaria.