Netherlands outlines details of Cruks self-exclusion tool

The Dutch government has outlined the mechanisms of the Centraal Register Uitsluiting Kansspelen (Cruks) self-exclusion system - to come into effect with the country’s new Remote Gambling Act - in a submission of its draft regulations to the European Commission.


A player may access Cruks through the DigiD system, a form of online ID that allows Dutch residents to access online services and government websites in the Netherlands.

In order to register, they then must enter their public service number (BSN), surname and date of birth. If the player is not a Dutch citizen, they must instead add details of foreign identity documents such as a passport.

If a player does not have access via DigiD, they can only be registered by employees of regulator the Kansspelautoriteit (KSA).

When a player registers with an online operator for the first time, or if the player wants to access a land-based casino, they enter their BSN, which leads to the generation of a Cruks code. This code is then compared to the list of codes for self-excluded players and if it matches, the player must not be allowed to register or enter.

The operator then must save the player’s Cruks code but delete their BSN. When a player logs in or enters a land-based casino again, the Cruks code is checked again against the list.

Cruks also generates some aggregated metrics that can be used to create reviews of its success. However, these metrics relate mostly to the number of queries and excluded players, as it does not include any data about players’ gaming habits.

The Dutch government said to the European Commission that the rules fit with European law as they were non-discriminatory, as they apply to all licensees regardless of channel. Furhtermore, it said, they are necessary in order to limit problem gambling and was no more restrictive than needed.

In addition, it said “application and technical specifications are common in the industry and across European jurisdictions”, with open and internationally accepted standards used wherever possible.

Cruks will come into effect with the Netherlands’ Remote Gambling Act, which is currently set for 1 March, 2021.

The law was originally scheduled to come into effect in July 2020, but was delayed to 1 January in November 2019 before another delay announced last month because of the effects of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic pushed the date back to 1 March.

In related news, the KSA has announced that it will regulate one-off lotteries - for which at least 40% of funds must go to “a cause in the public interest” - more closely going forward.

It will look to enforce lottery regulations on these draws, to avoid compliance breaches by third party operators.

The KSA said this had become necessary as it had become “increasingly common for organising associations or foundations to outsource the whole organization of the lottery”.

The KSA added that as it had not been scrutinising these third parties, it had been “impossible to determine whether the course of events is fair” or to check if the funds went to a good cause as required.

Under the new rules, licence-holders must now obtain a written agreement if they wish to outsource lottery operation to a third party and the KSA may take action in the event of “risky outsourcing structures”.