While public health is still our number one priority, now that venues are familiar with their COVID-19 requirements, our focus at OLGR is turning more towards our regular liquor and gaming compliance operations.
I’d like to remind licensees of the compliance checklists we publish to help you meet your obligations as a liquor and gaming licensee and to understand what OLGR compliance officers look for during inspections.
Gaming machine licensees also have self-assessment obligations. You can use these monthly self-assessment checklists as part of your gaming-related compliance program.
However, checklists do not replace the other processes you must have in place to achieve and maintain compliance with the law, such as staff training and daily monitoring of requirements – checklists are simply tools to assist you to meet your obligations.
You can find these checklists on the Business Queensland website.
COVID-19 has taught us just how important our harm minimisation strategies are and provided us with an opportunity to review our approach to reducing harm caused by gambling. OLGR’s compliance teams will be proactively reviewing venues’ commitment to the responsible service of gaming and ensuring you have harm minimisation strategies in place to assist your patrons.
Be alert to business scams
Is your club safe from scammers? The most common scam that targets businesses is the false billing scam. False billing is one of the most reported types of scam so far in 2021 with more than $2.7 million lost in January alone.
Business email compromise scams
Business email compromise scams are one of the most financially harmful types of scams affecting Australian businesses. In a business email compromise scam, scammers use information obtained by hacking your computer systems to find out who your suppliers are. Once they have that information they can impersonate the supplier and send you an email requesting that you change the bank account into which you pay their account. Staff will then later pay invoices or transfer money as normal, and not realise they have been scammed. Another scenario involves the scammer impersonating the CEO or a senior staff member of your business, emailing and requesting that money is transferred to them at a particular bank account for a variety of reasons, including an emergency or to purchase gift cards for employees as a surprise. Again, staff action the email as normal without realising they’ve been scammed.
False billing scams
False billing scams request your business to pay fake invoices. You may receive a phone call out of the blue from someone claiming to be a supplier, to confirm details of an advertisement or insist you have ordered certain goods or services. Scammers often use pressure tactics and insist that payment is made immediately, taking advantage of the fact that the person handling administrative duties may not know whether the goods or services have been requested.
Protect your business
- Always check that goods or services are both ordered and delivered before paying an invoice, and always read the fine print carefully.
- Make sure your IT security is up-to-date with anti-virus, anti-spyware software and a good firewall.
- If you receive an email at work from a sender you do not know, never click on links or open any attachments. Verify the identity of the sender by calling the organisation, but do not use the details provided in the email, find them through an independent source.
- limit the number of people in your business who are authorised to make orders or pay invoices.
- If you notice a supplier’s usual bank account details have changed, call them to confirm.
Visit the ScamWatch website to learn more about scams and how to protect your business. You can also subscribe to receive ScamWatch radar alerts on the latest scams.
Report a scam
You can report a scam on the ScamWatch website.
RSG reminder: Responsible gambling policy
Under the Queensland Responsible Gambling Code of Practice (the Code) every gambling provider must develop a responsible gambling policy document.
Your policy should be specific to your operations and, most importantly, be focussed on patrons and their families who are adversely affected by problem gambling.
The policy must also include a statement of responsibilities for you and your staff and take into consideration the local community in which you operate, including geographic and cultural issues.
Review your current policy alongside the clubs’ resource manual - a resource developed by Clubs Queensland and OLGR - to ensure your practices are in line with the Code and are keeping the safety and wellbeing of your patrons at the forefront of your operations.
Your local Gambling Help service provider is perfectly placed to provide feedback on your policy from a local perspective and we encourage you to connect with them during the review. You can find details of your local Gambling Help service provider via the Queensland Government website.
Remote gambling self-exclusions
Self-exclusion is a practical tool that can assist individuals to minimise their potential for gambling-related harm.
Just prior to venues reopening for gaming in July 2020, a new remote self-exclusion process was introduced. This process allows individuals to self-exclude from one or more venues through a Gambling Help Service (GHS) without physically attending the venues.
Should one of your patrons use this new tool a GHS will contact your venue to identify the most appropriate email address and contact person to receive the Form 3A –Self- exclusion notice. When you receive one of these forms you must action it as soon as practicable, usually within a 48-hour period. A step-by-step guide to assist licensees handle remote self-exclusion requests is available from our website.
Non-compliance with self-exclusion requirements may lead to OLGR considering compliance action. While an educational approach may be adopted in some circumstances, in more serious matters the maximum penalty for non-compliance is $6,672. Breaches of these provisions may also be included on a licensee’s compliance history and could be considered by the Commissioner in reviewing other trading related applications.
Venues can promote community safety through harm minimisation by maintaining a positive working relationship with their local GHS. Reach out to your local Gambling Help Service for advice and assistance.
New requirements for Cat 3 licence draw controls
OLGR is continuing to ensure that public confidence is maintained in the security and integrity of category 3 games conducted under the Charitable and Non-Profit Gaming Act 1999 (the Act).
A category 3 game is a game, other than bingo, where the gross proceeds are more than $50 000.
From July 1, 2021, licensee’s using an electronic draw system to conduct a category 3 game are required to ensure the draw system complies with the latest enhanced security requirements.
Similarly applicants lodging an application or renewal for a Category 3 Gaming Licence (Form 2A) will be required to provide information on the method/type of draw device and details of their draw procedures.
The draw procedures will need to detail the steps taken by a licensee to conduct a category 3 draw, including the testing, securing and storage of the draw device and the selection, verification and recording of winning tickets.
More information on draw procedure requirements is available in OLGR’s ‘Guide to Category 3 games’.
Safety spotlight: Fire exits
Licensees are reminded that even though staff need to enforce strict entry and exit points to ensure COVID contract tracing is completed accurately, fire exits must still be operational.
Designated fire exits must be clearly marked and easily accessible when a venue is occupied by patrons or staff, so they can used in an emergency. This is enforceable as it is part of a licensee’s requirement to keep patrons safe.
Be prepared for an emergency. Keep everyone safe by:
- servicing fire extinguishers every 6 months
- clearly identifying fire equipment locations
- having well-lit exit signs
- ensuring fire exits and equipment are not obstructed
- having an emergency evacuation plan
- training staff on evacuation procedures.