Foreign gambling sites are banned in Switzerland

On Sunday Swiss voters overwhelmingly approved blocking foreign-based betting sites in a high-stakes referendum on a new gambling law designed to prevent addiction, but which opponents said amounted to internet censorship.

The new Gambling Act won the support of 72.9% of voters, according to final results, despite accusations that the law amounts to online censorship. Due to take effect in 2019, the act, which will be one of the strictest in Europe, allows only Swiss-certified casinos and gaming firms to operate.

Passed through both houses of parliament, the act is set to empower the 21 casinos of Switzerland, with only Swiss certified casinos and gaming companies able to operate, and their offshore counterparts offering online gambling set to be banned. The government estimates that around $253m is currently wagered with unregulated foreign betting sites.

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