The Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) has revoked the gaming licensed it awarded to Playbay Malta Limited, which operates HDbets.com. The decision was due to systematic deficiencies discovered in the operator’s adherence to its AML/CFT obligations.
Voluntary suspension of Playbay’s B2C service license for fixed-odds betting expired on September 6, and the operator did not provide any plan of when and how it intended to reactive its authorization.
Playbay is no longer allowed to carry out any gaming operations, register new players, or accept new player deposits. However, it is required to retain and provide access to all registered players to their accounts and refund them of all funds standing to the credit of players in accordance with the law.
This move comes after several similar license cancellations, including the suspension of Knockout Gaming’s license in September 2020, Pick Mister’s license in March, and BetElephant’s license in April. Malta-based watch retailer Watch World Luxury, which previously offered peer-to-peer gaming on its websites and prize draws for its watches on social media, also had its license revoked by the regulator.
The MGA revealed the scale of its corruption crackdown last year in December 2019. The crackdown resulted to the suspension of 11 licenses, and 7 more licenses were cancelled between January and June 2019.
Back in May the regulator opened a consultation on suspicious bet reporting and introduced new methods for licensees to report suspicious betting activity.
All licensees are now required to report any suspicious betting activity to the MGA via a reporting system hosted on the MGA website.