SkyCity issues warning over scam gambling sites

SkyCity issues warning over scam gambling sites
Wild Casino

The entertainment company, which operates casinos in Auckland, Hamilton and Queenstown as well as as well as online, said it had seen a "significant increase” in the number of online advertisements using its name, logo and look to target customers.

The advertisements had appeared on and directed users to download an app from Google Play, SkyCity chief executive Michael Ahearne said.

“We are concerned that Kiwis are being misled into thinking they are playing on our SkyCity online casino when they are not.”

One Facebook page masquerading as SkyCity had attracted 3200 followers earlier this week. The page has since been removed.

Ahearne said people should be careful about the web addresses they used and be vigilant when clicking links.

“Regulating online gambling in New Zealand will help protect New Zealanders against some of these fraudulent activities.

“Regulators need to be given the power to deal with rogue operators who are out to scam New Zealanders.”

However, those rules were often skirted by overseas gambling operators, Ahearne said.

SkyCity regularly reported fraudulent use of its branding to social media websites directly, and to the gambling regulator, the Department of Internal Affairs.

From April 1 to June 30, government cybersecurity agency Cert NZ received 474 reports of incidents relating to online scams and cases of fraud.

Although this was a 24% decrease on the previous quarter, the category consistently featured in the top three reported to Cert NZ, it said.