South African credit card holders are currently being told by their banks that buying lottery tickets overseas, or gambling online using their credit cards, is illegal.
The banks are claiming that they have been advised by the Financial Surveillance Department of the Reserve Bank of South Africa that the use of credit and debit cards for these purposes is prohibited, and that the provisions of Exchange Control circulars state:
“Residents may not participate in lotteries organized abroad or participate in any online gambling activities, as such participation contravenes the Lotteries Act 57/1997 and the National Gambling Act 7/2004 as amended by the National Gambling Amendment Act 10/2008 .
“Residents may not use their credit or debit cards in the Republic to facilitate payments for the purchase of foreign lottery tickets and online gambling.
“Accordingly, authorized dealers must decline requests to purchase foreign exchange for such purposes in all instances.
“In addition, all issuers of American Express, Diners Club, Mastercard and Visa cards, may not accept debits against SA resident cardholder’s accounts in respect of the payment for the purchase of foreign lottery tickets or online gambling activities.”
The banking advisories warn clients that accounts will be monitored for such transactions.
Source: InfoPowa News