A UK law firm is threatening to bring a legal against Sky Vegas after they mistakenly sent promotional material to self-excluded customers. In all, more than 120,000 people that had opted out of being on the casino brand’s mailing list received the messages offering them free spins – an error that embarrassingly took place in the middle of the industry’s Safer Gambling Week.
Just one of the messages induced readers to ‘take a peek’ at a mystery bonus they had been awarded, before continuing: “Here at Sky Vegas, we love the unexpected. That’s right. Simply opt in, spend £5 and claim your 100 free spins. The best part? Whatever you win is yours to keep – that’s the fun in fair!” The promo was received by addicts that had self-excluded from the site, as well as thousands that had opted out of receiving marketing material.
‘Could Cost People Their Recovery’
Now the law firm, PGMBM, who specialise in acting in data breach cases, has said they would be interested in hearing from those that have been affected by the mistake, confirming that they are exploring the possibility of putting a legal action together.
The legal director at PGMBM, Tony Winterburn, has claimed that the mistake ‘could cost people their recovery’ from problem behaviours. “It is important that Sky are transparent and disclose how many people were sent the promotional material and the reasons for it,” he said.
The family members of those with gambling-associated issues will be sat at home quite rightly worried if their loved one has been sent this offer despite having done everything they can to try to stay away from these kinds of triggers.
Flutter, the holding company of Sky Vegas, have issued a full apology, with their chief executive Conor Grant stating:
I would like to sincerely apologise to all those who have been affected by the recent issue at Sky Vegas, whereby a number of people were mistakenly sent promotional communications.
I want to assure you that we are doing everything we can to get to the bottom of how this happened. We are conducting a full investigation into what went wrong, in particular so that we can ensure that it doesn’t happen again.
Once More into the Breach
Unfortunately, it’s not the first time that the Sky brands have failed to protect those that have self-excluded. In 2018, the sister company to Sky Vegas, Sky Bet, were fined £1 million after it was revealed that 730 players that had voluntarily placed themselves on the self-exclusion list were still able to open duplicate accounts.
In addition, some 50,000 customers on the self-excluded list continued to receive promotional content from Sky, while more than 36,000 players that decided to close their Sky Bet accounts did not receive their funds back.
An investigation from the UK Gambling Commission uncovered the breaches, and they issued the seven-figure fine in response due to the extent of the failings. “This was a serious failure affecting thousands of potentially vulnerable customers, and the £1 million penalty package should serve as a warning to all gambling businesses,” the UKGC’s Richard Watson said at the time.