The digital age has birthed a hydra-headed complex of challenges for the regulators of today’s society. Among the many heads of this monster that authorities must deal with, illegal gambling stands as one of the most elusive and financially perilous adversaries. In Greece, the Hellenic Gaming Commission (EEEP) has sounded the alarm on a problem that is not simply multiplying in scale but also threatening to entrench itself in the very fabric of the national economy.

In a move that is both audacious and perhaps long overdue, the EEEP has published findings that send shockwaves through the legislative corridors. According to their data, a staggering 10.4 percent of the Greek population, roughly equating to one in ten citizens, dipped into the murky waters of unauthorized games of chance in 2023. Lest one dismiss this as an isolated moral and legal concern, the implications of these engagements ripple into the economy with the force of a financial tsunami, accounting for an estimated €1.7 billion in illegal wagers.

Addressing the media and relevant stakeholders, the chairman of EEEP, Dimitris Dzanatos, did not mince words about the twin perils faced by Greece – the loss of significant revenue and the encroachment of youth into the shadows of gambling. But Chairman Dzanatos is not a man to simply decry the darkness; he proposes a solution tip-toeing on the wisdom of the ancient mathematician Euclid. He urges for a ‘golden ratio’ in regulation — a balanced approach that is as much about prohibition as it is about education and redirection. Technology, he posits, is neither the villain nor the hero, but a tool that can be wielded effectively by both sides in this brewing war against illegal betting.

One cannot fight this battle alone, and Dzanatos is unequivocal in his calls for a multi-sectoral collaboration. Ensuring partners from governmental bodies such as the Ministry of National Affairs of Economy and Finance, Ministries of Citizen Protection and Justice, the Bank of Greece, and anti-money laundering authorities, he is constructing a mosaic of collaborative governance. It is a call for a strategic alliance that transcends political affiliations and mandates, recognizing that the ramifications of illegal wagering are too vast for any one entity to tackle in isolation.

For avid Greek gamers, legal aficionados, and stakeholders within and outside the Hellenic borders, the EEEP’s clarion call is not just a matter of passing interest; it is a rallying cry for a concerted effort to reclaim what is slipping through the cracks of legality and common sense. The onus now lies on the collective shoulders of society to heed this call and participate in a monumental chapter in Greece’s history — the battle to restore the sanctity of chance and the integrity of the games that have shaped civilization for millennia.

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