AMLC calls for review of POGO licensees and service providers

The Philippines Anti-Money Laundering Council (AMLC) has called for a review of all existing POGO licensees and service providers, amid an increasing threat to money laundering and other fraudulent activities, local media reports. 

According to a study titled “Understanding the Internet-Based Casino Sector in the Philippines: A Risk Assessment,” there are a high number of unregulated or unsupervised service providers in the POGO sector. 

Service providers are those that offer services, such as gaming software or content streaming to qualified POGOs. 

“As not all SPs are within the realm of AML/CTF (Anti-Money Laundering/ Counterterrorism Financing) supervision, they are prone to abuse and exploitation by criminal organizations. In 2019, local authorities shut down around 200 Internet-based casinos and SPs, illegally servicing online gaming operations. In the same year, the local government also ceased the operations of one of the largest SPs for Internet-based casinos,” said AMLC.

The study also revealed that much of the information given by POGOs to PAGCOR such as their office address and the details of their compliance officer have been incorrect. 

“The offices of the POGOs, local gaming agents, and authorized representatives do not exist in the registered addresses provided by PAGCOR,” said the agency.

The study also showed an increasing level of threat to money laundering and other fraudulent activities.