The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

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Jimmy Justice
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Re: The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

Post by Jimmy Justice » Mon Dec 31, 2018 11:16 am

Thanks.

JJ

ajc18
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Re: The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

Post by ajc18 » Sat Jan 05, 2019 3:23 pm

Hello again,

Today I have sent the below email to the Gambling Comission.

Would you advise that I inform TSP/Nektan that I have done this or just wait for a response from the Gambling Comission?

To Gambling Commission,

I am writing to you to make an official complaint about the online gambling site 'The Sun Play' and it's operator Nektan.

I have tried to resolve the matter directly and amicably with both The Sun Play and Nektan, however as the complaint has now been ongoing for 50 days without resolution, I feel I have no option other than to escalate the matter to you as the governing body.

I joined the sun play in August of this year. In September i won a substantial amount of money, however was unable to withdraw my balance in one go due to amount withdrawl limits, and was advised by The Sun Play customer services team that i would have to wait 3 weeks until the 1st Octiber to withdraw any further amounts. ( A screenshot of this chat session is attached). This led me to continue to play the balance until I lost all of my winnings.

This made me assess my gambling habits and realise that I had a gambling problem.

On 07/10/18 I sent an emaiI to thesunplay customer service stating that i was concerned about my gambling habits and requested that my account be permanently closed. I received no response to this email and my account remained open allowing me to continue to gamble. (Email attached).

On 10/10/18 I called the Sun play customer service and advised that I had emailed asking for my account to be closed and hadnt received a response, I again explained that I had a gambling addiction and again requested for my account to be permanently closed. (Copy of my phone bill for proof of this phone call attached)


I was advised that my request would need to be passed to the VIP team and they would action my request.

My account wasn't closed, I received no contact from the VIP team and I was able to continue to use my account and continue to gamble.

On 05/11/18 I called the Sun Play customer service line again and again explained that I had twice requested for my account to be closed and that this still hasn't been done. (Copy of my phone bill for proof of this phone call attached). This time I was advised that this request couldn't be actioned over the phone and that I would need to email my request to customer services (again) as there was no record of my previous request.

I then again resent my original closure request email and again asked for the account to be closed permanently on 05/11/18 (email attached). Again I have not received any response to this email and my account is still open which has meant that I have been able to continue to gamble on the site.

On 16/11/18 I contacted Gambleaware for help and advice and explained all of the above to them and they advised that thesunplay had a social responsibility and a duty of care to close my account immediately as soon as i informed them that I had a problem with gambling and as I requested that my account be closed immediately, The Sun Play should refund any deposits made after my first request on 07/10/18.

After speaking to Gambleaware on 16/11/18 i again emailed Thesunplay and also copied in their operator Nektan explaining all of the above again, along with the evidence of the emails and phone calls that i had previously sent and made, and stated what Gambleaware had advised and requesting that my account be closed immediately and that all deposits made after 07/10/18 be refunded back to me.

This time I received and almost immediate response from Malcolm Campbell, Nektans head of compliance advising that my account had now been closed and that Nektans compliance team would be investigating my complaint internally and come back to me in due course.

After receiving no response for 3 weeks I emailed again on 07/12/18 and requested an update on Nektans investigation into my complaint. I received no response to this email.

On the 28/12/18 after still receiving no response i emailed again requesting an update on Nektans investigation to my complaint and advised that if I received no response within 7 days I would be escalating the matter externally.

I received a response from Malcolm Campbell later that day advising that Nektan could find no record of the emails and phone calls that i made to Thesunplay requesting closure of my accounts and asked me to provide him with the exact dates and times that the requests were made. This information had already been provided in my original complaint email to Nektan and the exact dates and times are shown on the screenshots that I sent, however I sent this information to Malcolm Campbell again.

On 31/12/18 I received a response from Malcolm Campbell to say that they had rechecked their logs and were still unable to find a record of the emails and calls to Thesunplay requesting cancellation of my account. Mr Campbell then asked me to send a screenshot of my email sent items, showing the date, time, subject or sent to name and requested that the emails be seen in sequence with other emails.

I have sent this information over as requested and have received no response.

The entire email thread between myself and Malcolm Campbell can be seen in the thread below and all relevant attachments and screenshots have been attached to this email for information.

As the governing body I am requesting your assistance in obtaining a refund from Nektan for the following:

*All deposits made to my account after my first cancellation request on 07/10/18

And

* A refund of my losses after i tried to withdraw my bakance on 11/09/18 and was advised by Toni at Thesunplay via online chat that I would be unable to withdraw until 01/10/18 as both the Gambling Commision and the Competion Markets Authority ruled last year that gambling companies should not unduly delay withdrawals as documented here:

https://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/n ... ction.aspx

And here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/onli ... ithdrawals

Many Thanks
Last edited by ajc18 on Wed Jan 09, 2019 11:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Jimmy Justice
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Re: The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

Post by Jimmy Justice » Mon Jan 07, 2019 9:44 am

Hi,

Thank you for updating us and for being so open about your experience. Hopefully your bravery will help to show regulators and others how some gambling companies operate.

Yes I would recommend you tell Nektan that you've contacted the Gambling Commission.

I'm looking forward to the response from the Gambling Commission and what they do.

Thank you again.

JJ

Jimmy Justice
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Posts: 594
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2016 9:16 am

Re: The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

Post by Jimmy Justice » Mon Jan 07, 2019 9:45 am

Forgot to say - the hyperlinks you've listed are dead. Do you wish to update these?

JJ

ajc18
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Re: The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

Post by ajc18 » Wed Jan 09, 2019 11:41 pm

Thanks, i have corrected the links in previous post.

No reply yet from Gambling Commission or Nektan/TSP - i will keep you posted.

However, i have received an incomplete response to my subject access request today (2 days before the 30 day deadline). i have sent the following response:



Hello,

Thank you for the data that you have sent, however it is incomplete.

In my subject access request, i requested the following:

· A copy of all emails sent from me to The Sun Play and all emails sent from The Sun Play to me.

· Recordings of all telephone calls made by me to The Sun Play

I have not been sent all emails sent from me to The Sun Play and all emails sent from The Sun Play to me.

There are emails that were sent by me to The Sun Play on the following dates and times that you have not sent:

Mon, 6 Aug 2018, 12:27

Tue, 7 Aug 2018, 12:54

Wed, 22 Aug 2018, 21:59

Sun, 7 Oct 2018, 23:49

Mon, 5 Nov 2018, 11:16

Additionally, you have not sent recordings of the calls made by me to the sun play. Calls were made by me to The Sun Play on the following dates and times:

Wed 10 Oct 2018, 16.20

Mon 5 Nov 2018, 11:02

Please send this data as I originally requested on 11/12/18 and as I am entitled to under data protection law.

Regards

Jimmy Justice
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Posts: 594
Joined: Wed Jan 13, 2016 9:16 am

Re: The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

Post by Jimmy Justice » Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:28 am

Excellent.

You may wish to report them to the Information Commissioner's Office as they've broken UK and EU privacy law by not fulfilling the SAR correctly.

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JJ

ajc18
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Re: The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

Post by ajc18 » Wed Jan 16, 2019 5:46 pm

Just to update...

I reported them to the Information Commissioners office on Monday, no response yet.

I have however received a reply from the Gambling Commission today (copied below). They have either not read or not understood my complaint properly so I will respond to them later this evening.


Dear **********,



Thank you for contacting the Gambling Commission regarding the issue you have experienced with The Sun Play, operating under Nektan (Gibraltar) Limited.



I understand that you had requested to close your account permanently with The Sun Play, this is evident in your live chat correspondence with their agent. You did not however state why you wanted your account closed. As your account was not closed you were able to continue gambling which has led you to lose money. There appears to be a dispute between yourself and the operator regarding the emails that have been sent and received as well as phones calls that have been made. You have also submitted a Subject Access Request (SAR) to the operator but this has not yet been fulfilled.



Please be advised that we do not have the legal powers to become involved in individual disputes between an operator and a consumer.



It would appear that you wanted your account closed as you were not happy with the withdrawal limit that you had, within your live chat correspondence you have not made any indication to potential problem gambling or issues you may be experiencing. In any regard, we will not enter into a dispute with a consumer and an operator surrounding the facts, what emails have been sent and what phone calls were made. You have submitted a SAR for this information but it has not yet been responded to, I would therefore advise that you raise this matter directly with the Information Commissioners Office (ICO). The ICO are the primary regulator for matters relating to data protection and SARs. Please be informed that if the ICO have concerns about an operator then they will choose whether to discuss this further with us.

I would therefore advise that should you wish us to consider your complaint from a regulatory perspective that you collate all the finalised information together and provide this to us. I would recommend that you do after the completion of SAR. Please be informed however that based on the information provided so far, this does not appear to be something that would fall within our scope as a regulator. If you would like to pursue the retrieval of funds further then you will need to seek your own independent legal advice and proceed through the courts.



I hope you understand our position on this matter.



Your enquiry reference number is 1-161764355



To help us to continually improve our service, we would be grateful if you could complete our short online survey. Please click on the following link should you wish to complete the survey: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/63RPKWN



Yours sincerely



Daniel Newby

Contact Advisor

GAMBLING COMMISSION

Victoria Square House

Victoria Square

Birmingham B2 4BP

Tel: 0121 230 6666

www.gamblingcommission.gov.u

Del
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Re: The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

Post by Del » Thu Jan 17, 2019 6:52 pm

Pretty much standard responses there from the GC. Though I note they are now advising they have no legal powers to intervene in customer/operator disputes.

But they do still round off with their usual traffic directions to the courts.

It really isn't surprising that so many court cases have to be instigated to move operators in these situations. The regulator is happy to pass.

Get the full SAR data then re-evaluate before thinking of embarking on a court claim. It's not a magic wand, but it can get results either very quickly or very slowly. Depends on the size of the claim and circumstances. I'd say in this case it could be a long haul, but that's just my opinion.

ajc18
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Re: The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

Post by ajc18 » Thu Jan 17, 2019 7:13 pm

When the Sun Play partially responded to my SAR they did include a break down of all transactions made so I do have those details. The total of the claim is £14,471.

I replied to the Gambling Commission with the following last night:

Dear Mr Newby,

Please read my original complaint again.

My complaint is not that my account was not closed when I spoke to the live chat agent as I did not request my account be closed via live chat.

My first complaint is:

The Sun Play advised me on live chat on 11/09/18 that I would have to wait 3 weeks until 1st October to withdraw my £6,000 balance due to their monthly withdrawal limits. (I provided a screenshot of this chat in my original complaint to you, however i have attached again for reference).

They should have not have advised that and should have placed this limit withdrawal as both the Gambling Commission and the Competition
Markets Authority ruled last year that gambling companies should not unduly delay withdrawals as documented here:

https://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/n ... ction.aspx

And here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/onli ... ithdrawals

Therefore The Sun Play should refund the £6,000 that i tried to withdraw but they would not allow me to.


My Second complaint is:

I advised The Sun Play 4 times that i had a gambling problem and requested that my account be permanently closed - my request was ignored each time.

I first requested that my account be closed via email to the sun play on 07/10/18 and clearly stated that I had a gambling problem. This email was ignored. (I provided a screenshot of this email in my original complaint to you, however i have attached again for reference).

I then called The Sun play customer service on 10/10/18 and advised that I had emailed asking for my account to be closed and hadn't received a response, I again explained that I had a gambling addiction and again requested for my account to be permanently closed. I was advised that my request would need to be passed to the VIP team and they would action my request. My account wasn't closed, I received no contact from the VIP team and I was able to continue to use my account and continue to gamble. (I provided a screenshot of my phone bill showing proof of this call in my original complaint to you, however i have attached again for reference).

On 05/11/18 I called the Sun Play customer service line again and again explained that I had twice requested for my account to be closed and that this still hasn't been done. This time I was advised that this request couldn't be actioned over the phone and that I would need to email my request to customer services (again) as there was no record of my previous request. (I provided a screenshot of my phone bill showing proof of this call in my original complaint to you, however i have attached again for reference).

I then again resent my original closure request email and AGAIN asked for the account to be closed permanently on 05/11/18. Again I did not received any response to this email and my account remained open which meant i was able to continue to gamble on the site. (I provided a screenshot of my phone bill showing proof of this call in my original complaint to you, however i have attached again for reference).

My account was not closed until i escalated the matter to Nektan, The Sun Play's operator on 16/11/18 - 46 days after first emailing The Sun Play requesting that my account was closed permanently as i had a problem with gambling.

Therefore The Sun Play should refund £8,471 which is the total of all deposits made to my account after my first cancellation request on 07/10/18, minus any withdrawals made after this date.

The Total amount that The Sun Play should refund me is £14,471.

Many Thanks

ajc18
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Re: The Sun Play (Nektan) ignoring closure requests

Post by ajc18 » Thu Jan 17, 2019 7:20 pm

I also sent a complaint to Hannah Swales, Head of bingo and games at News UK:


Hi Hannah,

I am writing to you as Head of bingo and games at News UK to make an official complaint about the The Sun's online gambling site 'The Sun Play' and it's operator Nektan, and to request your assistance in obtaining a resolution.

As the Sun advertises it's self as a family newspaper, I imagine being socially responsible is important to The Sun and that you require any companies using The Sun's branding and acting on your behalf to also act responsibly, within the law, and also follow the rules set by it's governing body.

The Sun Play and it's operator Nektan (whilst acting on behalf of 'The Sun') have not acted responsibly, have broken European and UK privacy laws and have not followed rules and guidelines set by the gambling commission, as such I have now reported 'The Sun Play' and Nektan to both the Gambling Commission and the Information Commissioners Office.

I have tried to resolve the matter directly and amicably with both The Sun Play and Nektan, however as the complaint has now been ongoing for 9 weeks without resolution, I am writing to you to ask for your assistance in resolving this matter as they are trading under under your name (The Sun) which is mainly the reason that I joined the site in the first place, as I thought that "The Sun" was a brand that could be trusted.

I joined the sun play in August of this year. In September i won a substantial amount of money, however was unable to withdraw my balance in one go due to amount withdrawal limits, and was advised by The Sun Play customer services team that i would have to wait 3 weeks until the 1st October to withdraw any further amounts. This led me to continue to play the balance until I lost all of my winnings.

This made me assess my gambling habits and realise that I had a gambling problem.

On 07/10/18 I sent an emaiI to 'The Sun Play' customer service stating that i was concerned about my gambling habits and requested that my account be permanently closed. I received no response to this email and my account remained open allowing me to continue to gamble.

On 10/10/18 I called 'The Sun Play' customer service and advised that I had emailed asking for my account to be closed and hadn't received a response, I again explained that I had a gambling addiction and again requested for my account to be permanently closed.

I was advised that my request would need to be passed to the VIP team and they would action my request.

My account wasn't closed, I received no contact from the VIP team and I was able to continue to use my account and continue to gamble.

On 05/11/18 I called 'The Sun Play' customer service line again and again explained that I had twice requested for my account to be closed and that this still hasn't been done. This time I was advised that this request couldn't be actioned over the phone and that I would need to email my request to customer services (again) as there was no record of my previous request.

I then again resent my original closure request email and again asked for the account to be closed permanently on 05/11/18. Again I did not received any response to this email and my account remained open which has meant that I have been able to continue to gamble on the site.

On 16/11/18 I contacted Gambleaware for help and advice and explained all of the above to them and they advised that 'The Sun Play' had a social responsibility and a duty of care to close my account immediately as soon as i informed them that I had a problem with gambling and as I requested that my account be closed immediately, 'The Sun Play' should refund any deposits made after my first request on 07/10/18.

After speaking to Gambleaware on 16/11/18 i again emailed 'The Sun Play' and also copied in their operator Nektan explaining all of the above again, along with the evidence of the emails and phone calls that i had previously sent and made, and stated what Gambleaware had advised and requesting that my account be closed immediately and that all deposits made after 07/10/18 be refunded back to me.

This time I received and almost immediate response from Malcolm Campbell, Nektans head of compliance advising that my account had now been closed and that Nektans compliance team would be investigating my complaint internally and come back to me in due course.

After receiving no response for 3 weeks I emailed again on 07/12/18 and requested an update on Nektans investigation into my complaint. I received no response to this email.

On the 28/12/18 after still receiving no response i emailed again requesting an update on Nektans investigation to my complaint and advised that if I received no response within 7 days I would be escalating the matter externally.

I received a response from Malcolm Campbell later that day advising that Nektan could find no record of the emails and phone calls that i made to The Sun Play requesting closure of my accounts and asked me to provide him with the exact dates and times that the requests were made. This information had already been provided in my original complaint email to Nektan and the exact dates and times are shown on the screenshots that I sent, however I sent this information to Malcolm Campbell again.

On 31/12/18 I received a response from Malcolm Campbell to say that they had rechecked their logs and were still unable to find a record of the emails and calls to The Sun Play requesting cancellation of my account. Mr Campbell then asked me to send a screenshot of my email sent items, showing the date, time, subject or sent to name and requested that the emails be seen in sequence with other emails.

I have sent this information over as requested and as i have received no response at all.

The entire email thread between myself and Malcolm Campbell can be seen in the thread below.

In addition to this, I requested a Subject Access on 11/12/18. Incomplete data was sent to me on 09/01/18 and despite 2 further requests from me to provide the full data that they hold as requested by me on 11/12/18 as I am entitled to under data protection law, the data that I have requested has not been sent and I have received no responses to my emails. As they have ignored my response advising that the data that they have sent is incomplete, and further 2 requests to provide all requested data within 30 days, they have broken UK and EU privacy laws and as such I have reported them to the Information Commissioners Office.

As Nektan is running 'The Sun Play' on your behalf and using 'The Sun' name and branding, I am requesting your assistance in obtaining a refund from 'The Sun Play'/Nektan for the following:

£8471 refund for all deposits made to my account after my first cancellation request on 07/10/18, minus any withdrawals made after this date.

£6000 refund of my losses after i tried to withdraw my balance of £6000 on 11/09/18 and was advised by Toni at The Sun Play via online chat that I would be unable to withdraw until 3 weeks later 01/10/18, as both the Gambling Commision and the Competition Markets Authority ruled last year that gambling companies should not unduly delay withdrawals as documented here:

https://www.gamblingcommission.gov.uk/n ... ction.aspx

And here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/onli ... ithdrawals



Total refund: £14,471


Many Thanks





I received the following response from Hannah Seales this morning:

Dear *****,

Thank you for getting in touch, we will look into this matter and I will get back to you.

Thanks

Hannah

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