Operator Rank Group has been fined £500,000 by the UK Gambling Commission for failing to protect a problem gambler who at one stage lost £1m from his account in a 24-hour period.

Rank Group

The Commission found that Rank failed to interact with a customer displaying problematic behaviour, contacted him during a self-exclusion period and did not follow rules for the provision of credit.

The gambling of substantial amounts took place at Rank’s land-based Grosvenor Casino and online at www.grosvenorcasinos.com. Richard Watson, executive director at the UK Gambling Commission, said that the penalty package would have been “a lot higher” had Rank not taken positive action in self-reporting their failures and being open and transparent during the subsequent investigation.

“We expect all operators to protect any consumer who maybe experiencing problems with their gambling, and operators shouldn’t fall into the trap of thinking that VIP customers don’t experience difficulties,” said Watson.

“No matter how wealthy customers are, operators still need to monitor them effectively to ensure they aren’t showing signs of problem gambling. It is certainly not appropriate to visit customers during a period when they are self-excluded.”

The fine paid by Rank will be used to analyse the data sets of customers deemed high-value, to identify risk indicators associated with harmful gambling.