Quebec has the second-highest gambling revenues in Canada. However, it is also home to one of the densest concentrations of illegal online casinos in North America. These are sites that have no physical presence anywhere but exist only through an internet connection with various websites used for registration and payment processing. The government says these types of operations deprive Quebecers from their legitimate right to gamble on land or at a casino while allowing unregulated businesses to operate outside this lawless system without consequence…

In its war against illicit internet gambling sites, Loto-Québec has asked the police department and federal parliamentarians for assistance. In a speech before an audience at the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal on Wednesday, the Crown corporation’s new President and CEO, Jean-François Bergeron, revealed that the firm is having difficulty establishing itself in the online gambling market.


There are already a number of online websites that provide legal free-to-play gambling; however, many of them are just gateways to pay-to-play platforms that are not authorized by the province. As a result, more and more consumers are being lured to these websites with no player safeguards, rather than gambling on Loto-regulated Québec’s platform.

Assistance is required.


Mr. Bergeron indicated during the conference that the Crown agency is doing its best to combat the problem, but that the federal government and public security must also play a role. He claims that he is not placing pressure on any of them since they are all on the same team. He said that the companies’ TV advertisements are allowed, but their pay-to-play model is illegal, and the Crown is the only licensed online gambling provider.

The President and CEO feels that the Crown’s procedure for admitting newly-registered customers online should be simplified, since it is somewhat more cumbersome than the offshore sites. According to him, this is the first turning point for gamers since it takes more than merely registering an account and inserting a credit card to start playing.

Mr. Bergeron, on the other hand, does not intend to give up the battle against illicit gambling websites, claiming that the Crown must improve and expand its present offers. He also said that numerous sports teams and TV networks promote the websites, and that those who associate with them should consider the reputational implications of supporting illicit websites, in his view.

He ended by pointing out that single-event wagering was just recently allowed on August 27, 2021, and that it was something that fans have been clamoring for for a long time. He claims that if it were lawful, the Crown would have adopted it long ago, and that the federal government must offer a more fair playing field for Crown institutions until all offshore locations are gone.

The case has now been taken to court.

The Crown corporation had a security breach a while back, which was discovered by the province’s permanent anti-corruption unit. Martin Raymond, a computer analyst from Terrebonne, was discovered to have used his job as a computer analyst at an online gaming center to concoct a fraudulent scheme using the access he had to consumers’ accounts. The 37-year-old was recently charged with a number of criminal offenses.

Staff Vaccination Protocols

Loto-Québec had previously said that it would not mandate its personnel to be vaccinated in response to the unusual circumstance, despite the fact that many other institutions in the province had done so. Mr. Bergeron said that he does not believe that many businesses have the resources to adopt such immunization passports, and that he does not intend to urge the federal government to do so for casino employees.

“Loto-Quebec argues authorities lack instruments to combat illicit internet gambling,” Montreal CTV News, November 11, 2021.

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