Malaysia blocks over 6000 online gambling websites from 2020 to 2022

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In response to a formal request by the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM), the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) blocked 6,381 websites from 2020 through the end of 2022 that offered online gambling.

Along with the websites, more than 2 lakh phone lines—both mobile and fixed—that sent suspicious SMS spam such as advertisements for illegal loans and online gambling were also terminated.

“Following a consumer association’s request for online gambling platforms to be regulated, MCMC is always committed to supporting PDRM enforcement actions to crack down on online gambling activities that are subject to the Common Gaming Houses Act 1953 (Act 289),” the MCMC said, according to The Sun Daily.

“The PDRM carries out actions and enforcement while the MCMC’s role is to provide technical assistance to them, including the provision of information and the blocking of gambling websites based on requests from the police,” the MCMC added.

MCMC believes that self-awareness, education and self-control are also essential in order to prevent online gambling, in addition to current enforcement actions like prosecution or sanctions. Users, in general, can help with efforts to stop online gambling promotion activities, according to officials, by reporting text messages promoting gambling to the MCMC so that necessary action can be taken with the help of telecom service providers.

One of the officials said, “If users receive gambling advertisements through short messaging applications such as WhatsApp and social media like Facebook, report the number or social media account to the application service or social media platform providers so that the number or account cannot send online gambling promotional advertisements to other users.”

Other countries in the region have also been taking strict actions against online gambling with an aim to curb money laundering and illegal transactions. Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA) also issued notices to all ISPs to block user access to platforms providing online gambling services. Even Bangladesh has been dealing with the same and has blocked gambling websites like 1xBet, Mostbet and Betbuzz.