Saxony-Anhalt issues technical regulation for German deposit limit

The German state of Sachsen-Anhalt has issued new technical regulations, explaining in more detail how deposit limits between operators in the country will be implemented, as the online casino is regulated nationwide.

When Germany’s fourth state gambling treaty (GlüNeuRStV) comes into force, operators will need to connect to two systems.

The first is an evaluation system, allowing the collection of game data on the entire market. The second system makes it possible to implement the country’s inter-operator deposit cap and prevents players from playing with multiple operators at the same time.

The state government has reminded operators that they must properly record all data necessary for the data collection system and must set up “safe servers” at their own expense in order to protect the privacy of players while by doing so.

For the enforcement of deposit limits and the prevention of “side play”, operators must register player data under a pseudonym in order to keep individual data secure. Operators will have unique authorization certificates to access this data.

Players will have a status which can be set to “active” or “inactive”. If the status is active, which means they are currently playing with one operator, they will not be able to play with another at the same time.

If a player deletes their gaming account, their data should be deleted immediately.

The Saxony-Anhalt State Administrative Office will oversee these systems for the first 18 months, after which the IT management company Dataport will take over.

A sandbox testing system has been made available to operators, although the state government has said it is not intended for mass testing of large numbers of players. Rather, it’s just about helping to adapt to the user interface. Real personal data should not be used in the sandbox.

While the new state treaty is due to enter into force on July 1, it risks being delayed due to concerns about the tax rates involved. The Bundesrat has proposed a 5.3% tax on online slots and poker turnover, a rate the industry has called so high it is impractical.

As a result, the German industry association Deutsche Sportwettenverband (DSWB) has filed a complaint with the European Commission, arguing that the tax rates unfairly favor the land sector and therefore constitute state aid in violation of EU law.

DSWB’s argument echoes a similar concern raised by the European Betting and Gaming Association, which said the difference in tax bills between the land and online sectors in Bavaria would amount to 293.9 millions of euros.

Currently, online gambling can be offered in Germany through a transitional regime, in which operators must follow the rules of the new treaty. These conditions include the restriction of slot machines to a wagering limit of € 1 per spin, with an average spin speed of five seconds.

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