Indonesia Intensifies Crackdown on Online Gambling with New Task Force

Indonesia’s government is stepping up its efforts to curb online gambling through a newly formed task force announced by Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal, and Security Affairs, Hadi Tjahjanto.

The task force aims to sever access to international online gambling platforms and closely monitor associated financial transactions.

In a press conference in Jakarta, Minister Tjahjanto detailed the government’s strategy for tackling the pervasive issue.

The task force will focus on blocking network access providers that facilitate online gambling, effectively cutting off access to these platforms for Indonesian users.

To enforce these measures, the task force will collaborate with village-affiliated non-commissioned officers (Babinsa) of the National Armed Forces (TNI) and security and public order officers (Bhabinkamtibnas) of the National Police (Polri).

These officers are tasked with monitoring the misuse of payment systems that could potentially support online gambling activities.

“The Bhabinkamtibnas and Babinsa are also actively tracking the trading of bank accounts used for online gambling, along with mini-markets that facilitate online gambling top-ups,” Tjahjanto said.

This monitoring extends to observing trends in online gambling activities, especially following the implementation of these new prevention measures.

President Joko Widodo officially established the task force on June 14, with Tjahjanto at the helm, signaling a serious governmental push against the online gambling issue that has seen bank account trading linked to these activities, often targeting vulnerable populations in rural areas.

Additionally, the Financial Transaction Reports and Analysis Center (PPATK) plays a critical role in this initiative.

The PPATK has already identified between 4,000 and 5,000 bank accounts suspected of being linked to online gambling networks. These findings will be forwarded to Polri’s Criminal Investigation Agency for further action.

Under the current procedure, the names of suspected bank accounts will be announced to their owners, providing a 30-day window to claim ownership.

Failing to do so will result in the funds being transferred to the state, and subsequent efforts will trace the origins of these accounts.

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