The Gambling Act 2003 does not allow remote interactive gambling as stated in Section 9(2)(b). The law defines remote interactive gambling as “gambling by a person at a distance by interaction through a communication device.”
The section also defines communication devices to be computers, telephones, cellphones, radios and/or similar devices. An example would be when you sell lottery tickets online and this also includes casino websites operating within New Zealand.
However, the law also provides some exceptions. Like sales promotions in the form of the lottery but sales promotions that are not in the lottery will fall under the remote interactive gambling prohibition.
The remote interactive gambling law is only for New Zealand and does not include gambling being conducted in other countries. So, a Kiwi player who plays over the internet on a website that is based in other countries will not be violating the law.
It is important to note that players will be subjected to the laws of the country where the website is operating.
There is also the danger of getting your personal information exposed by fraudulent websites or phishing sites. There are many of these sites and most of them will look and feel very legal to those who will not take the time to investigate.
It is always best practice to research the websites first before engaging them or before sharing your personal information. Research their licenses and certificates and check the governing bodies of those certificates to validate them.
Ministry of Health’s Involvement in Legal Gambling
It is also important to note that most Kiwis who enjoy online gambling are betting on websites that are operating in other countries. The Ministry of Health has been working hard for many years helping individuals that have developed mental/emotional problems due to gambling.
Gambling-related health issues have a large provision under the New Zealand Medical Laws. New Zealand has always been one of the world’s advocates in providing free medical healthcare.
They have also been working hard on providing guidance to casino establishments and betting establishments to guarantee that gamers are protected and educated from the harmful effects of gambling but they can do little when some gamblers are doing their betting on websites that are outside of New Zealand.
The Gambling Act of 2003 has a hefty fine for those caught participating in unauthorized gambling. Fines can reach $10,000 for individuals and organizations can be fined up to $50,000 so it is best to just follow the laws governing gambling to avoid problems.