Odhran Griffin on CoinGeek Backstage

MGA’s Odhran Griffin talks Malta’s blockchain regulation in the gambling space

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Blockchain technology has made inroads into gambling, offering transparency and efficiency in an industry that needs it more than most. However, this integration has posed a new challenge for regulators, and as Odhran Griffin tells CoinGeek Backstage, the Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) is leading in regulating the new world of blockchain-powered gambling.

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Griffin was at the London Blockchain Conference, where he gave a presentation on regulating the use of DLT in the gambling industry. In an interview with CoinGeek Backstage reporter Becky Liggero, he delved into how the MGA’s regulatory stance has evolved over the years to keep up with the rapid adoption of new technologies.

“We’ve been regulating the space for over 25 years, and in that time, we’ve struck the balance between protecting the players and supporting businesses,” he stated.

The gambling industry has always been a pace setter in adopting new technology, from digital payments to augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). Blockchain is the latest technology the industry is integrating, and regulators globally are scrambling to regulate this integration.

For the MGA, all the guidelines must be adhered to, regardless of the underlying technology, Griffin says:

“…we can’t just let go of the requirements that we’ve built up over the years just to adopt this new technology. We want to do it in a way that we can still maintain the same standards.”

Gambling is a diverse and multi-faceted industry encompassing several other sectors and technologies. This makes it critical for different regulators to work together to close all loopholes and prevent regulatory arbitrage.

In Malta, MGA works closely with the Malta Financial Services Authority (MFSA), the Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit, and the Malta Digital Innovation Authority to oversee the sector.

Malta welcomes all gambling stakeholders, from players to infrastructure companies, Griffin concluded.

“Reach out and we’ll answer any questions you have.”

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