Nepal: NTA issues notice to ISPs for blocking access to digital platforms offering online betting

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Nepal Telecommunications Authority (NTA) has been putting in efforts to restrict the sites responsible for encouraging online betting and virtual currencies. The measures have been taken with the increasing problems of illegal financial transactions through such digital mediums.

Last Sunday, the NTA had issued a public notice to the internet service providers (ISPs) urging them to block the web portals dealing with online gambling, bitcoin, cryptocurrencies and hyper networking.

According to NTA, there has been an increase in these kinds of illegal transactions despite the National Rastra Bank (NRB) not having validated the digital platforms like virtual currency and network marketing as the nation’s monetary instruments.

Meanwhile, the regulator body has warned of a legal action that shall be taken against those ISPs who breach the strict directives.

“The ISPs are directed to deactivate the accessibility to manage and use the website, apps, and online networks related to the financial crime,” reads the notice issued by the NTA, as reported by My Republica.

The instructions regarding this move have been issued to all the internet service providers within Nepal. The motto is to completely prevent the access of such online platforms, apps or websites.

Even though a similar notice was issued in April last year, according to the authorities, the ISPs did not heed to the warning and failed to co-operate regarding the same.

Now, NTA has decided to enforce this stringent regulation in the wake of several arrests made for online betting related to cricket and the FIFA World Cup 2022. Moreover, there is a huge concern that these notorious activities are directly responsible for decreasing the remittance amounts into Nepal.

The accused people have been found guilty of transacting over Nepalese Rs. 3 crore of the public money in a duration of six months by making use of over 40 bank accounts.

At the same time, there have also been reports that these websites and apps have been shut down by NTA after they figured out that many of the locals living in Nepal and abroad have involvement in illegal transactions like crypto currency, hyper-fund and networking which has ultimately resulted in affecting the inflows of remittance into the country.