Google Fined by AgCOM For Violating Blanket Ban on Gambling Ads

Google Fined by AgCOM For Violating Blanket Ban on Gambling Ads

Italian communications regulator AgCOM recently fined Google for breaching a blanket ban on gambling advertising. The fine comes after Google allowed a paid advertisement from a gambling operator appears on its search results page.

No details available on the fine

The Autorità per le Garanzie nelle Comunicazioni (AgCOM) announced the fine on Thursday but did not provide many details on the same. The fine was imposed on Google Ireland Ltd., which operates Google Ads service. The regulator informed that the company allowed paid advertisements from sublime-casino.com, a betting website, to appear on its search results page.

Google Fined by AgCOM For Violating Blanket Ban on Gambling Ads

According to sources close to the matter, the fine could be around €100,000. There is no information about the fine being related to a previous investigation by the watchdog. AgCOM announced last month that it would intensify its investigation into Google companies for possible violations of its blanket bans on Italy regarding gambling advertising.

2018’s Dignity Decree bans gambling advertising

The Dignity Decree was passed in 2018 in the country which prohibited all forms of advertising related to gambling. Licensed gambling operators criticized the move. They claimed that their rankings in local Google search results dropped as foreign operated websites gained more prominence. This led to unlicensed websites getting more traction. Some of the licensed gambling operators even said that creating a blanket ban was like giving the online gambling market to unlicensed operators on a plate.

AgCOM earlier said that it will examine Article 9 of the Decree to see if it covers search engine results. The regulator believed that Google was flouting the ban by ranking foreign gambling operators on top. AgCOM has not been shy of using enforcement actions for gambling advertising. The fine on Google is the latest in a series of similar penalties. The regulator has mostly focused on bonus offerings that gambling operators post on their platforms to lure users. Due to the strict regulations, most operators had no choice but to accept a fine.

sherlock

About sherlock

Sherlock Gomes loves to write and express his views on anything related to Gaming, Gambling, & Casino. He has been covering Gaming for more than two years now.

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