The UK Gambling Commission has announced changes on the horizon for online gambling in Britain that apply to sportsbooks and online casinos. The shift is towards protecting gamblers from racking up debt and spending more than they can afford. All UK operators are now obliged to register with GamStop, which assists individuals with gambling problems. Over the last two decades, the UK gambling industry was mostly unregulated, but that changed with measures introduced by the UK gambling commission. The changes in 2020 were prompted by reports that 0.7% of people over 16 years old have a problem with gambling. The focus had been mainly limited to high street bookies, and Fixed Odds Betting Terminals (FOBTs), along with roulette machines that accept £1,000s a day from gamblers. That limit was reduced to maximum bets of £2, down from £100s back in 2019. That badly affected high street bookmakers who were dependent on revenue from sports betting in their establishments. There is a ban on the use of credit cards for online gambling since 22% of gamblers who deposit with credit cards are deemed problem gamblers. The prohibition also extends to deposits via eWallets such as Paypal and Neteller.
The Future of Gambling Online in the UK
Further changes are expected to be introduced in March 2021, with limitations on advertising, VIP loyalty schemes, depositing methods and other areas. The changes are being prompted by an increase in problem gamblers. The UK government will introduce the UK Gambling Act in March 2021 to create a fair playing environment for players by placing limitations on operators. The radical changes affect how online casinos and sportsbooks accept bets.
Changes to Advertising, VIP Schemes & Welcome Bonuses
According to research by www.casinofans.co.uk into the new Gambling Act, the regulations will limit the exposure of gambling-related advertising on TV, and social media, especially around sports. The offering of free spins, free bets and the like will be reviewed in light of the steep wagering requirements. VIP schemes that target high rollers are more likely to affect problem gamblers, and will also be under review. These changes are welcomed by leading casino review sites like casinofans.co.uk to ensure responsible gambling at safe and reflected casino websites. Depositing and betting limits are under review as well. Numerous online slots have incredibly high betting limits per spin, which can result in thousands of pounds being lost in a matter of minutes. Action will be taken to decrease the maximum permissible bets allowed on such games, which is likely to be top of the list.
How the UK Gambling Industry has Changed Since Becoming Regulated
The UK Gambling Commission has made membership of GamStop for operators compulsory and a condition for licensing. It allows players to self-exclude themselves from gambling on a nation-wide level. Although the self-exclusion scheme had setbacks since it eas introduced in 2017, it has since become a highly useful tool to combat problematic gambling. Studies published in 2019 by The Gambling Related Harm All-Party Parliamentary Group claimed the UK Gambling Commission was ineffective in protecting vulnerable and problem gamblers and was failing in its duty to stop gambling companies from exploiting underage individuals and money laundering by criminal enterprises. However, on the whole, the changes have so far been effective in limiting problem gamblers from accessing online gambling sites and casinos.
So what exactly will the impact of the new gambling act be for online operators? Will the £5 billion a year industry suffer a setback? After the groundwork was set in place back in 2005 with the Gambling Act, passed by Tony Blair’s government, the new act will further solidify the conditions for operators in the UK which will likely lead to some operators leaving the jurisdiction, while others will adapt to the new rules. We welcome any initiatives that protect vulnerable individuals and gamblers with problems. It can only make the industry safer and more appealing to gamblers. In the long run, the act will achieve a fair balance between safe online gambling and the freedom to enjoy betting on sports or at an online casino.
If allowed/source: You can keep up to date with all the expected changes in the UK gambling industry right here at www.casinofans.co.uk.