Unregistered gaming site fraudulently used Casino Rama name in advert

Police say the online scam used the prominent casino as bait

The Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) have warned that an unregistered gaming site is fraudulently using the Casino Rama name in social media advertising to draw unsuspecting players to its own site.

In a joint advisory, the OPP and the Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO) said that online gambling adverts that have been promoting gaming offerings allegedly provided by Casino Rama actually have no association with the Gateway Casinos & Entertainment-operated casino. In reality, the ads direct the public to a website belonging to WinSpirit Casino, which operates as an unregistered gaming platform. The site’s registered address is in Curaçao.

The OPP’s Investigation and Enforcement Bureau (IEB) was notified of the suspected fraudulent marketing on April 11.

“Residents of Ontario who opt for online gambling are urged to exercise caution when encountering such advertisements and to verify that the gaming site they intend to use is registered with the AGCO,” the OPP said in a statement.

Police stress that Casino Rama has no affiliation with any unregistered online casinos.

The IEB and AGCO jointly reminded the public to exercise caution when choosing to access online casino gaming sites found through social media advertisements.

Canadian Gaming Association calls on Meta to do more

The fraudulent advertising was criticized by the Canadian Gaming Association, as was the social media and technology giant Meta, which the CGA said needs to do more to prevent this kind of fraud.

“Social media platforms are happy to take advertising dollars from licensed, regulated gaming operators but Meta allowing this fraud to carry on for months is intolerable,” said CGA President Paul Burns in a post on LinkedIn. “Virtually every land-based casino brand in the country has had its brand highjacked to promote fraudulent online sites in the past several months.”

“Why doesn’t Meta ask for a proof of license (like other online businesses do) before allowing fraudulent sponsored posts to show up on their platforms?” added the CGA’s Senior Advisor Amanda Brewer. “I’ve seen these ads pop up on both Instagram and Facebook this week and it’s downright maddening. This is fraud, full stop. Meta needs to come to the table with solutions as people will be taken advantage of and there’s no excuse for allowing this to happen.”

You might also like