The UK Gambling Commission – the organisation tasked with ensuring UK players are always treated properly by gambling companies – has been busy recently. Find out what they’ve done over the last month by reading below…
Tougher Age and ID Checks Discussed
Perhaps the biggest announcement made by the UK Gambling Commission recently is the fact that they’re considering stricter age and ID checks for players from May 2019. This would force players to provide their name, address and email address before they can place a bet at any gambling site. This should, in turn, close a loophole in Gamstop, ensuring that everyone who joins the Gamstop scheme is banned from all gambling websites. Any site found to be accepting players who have signed up to the Gamstop scheme could find that their licence is lost.
It’s also the case that the UKGC will demand stricter checks on credit and debit cards being used online. This is to ensure they’re not being used by problem gamblers who have stolen the cards to fund their habit. Some are even considering banning the use of credit cards at gambling sites entirely, concerned about the debts some are running up.
Problem Gambling Takes a Small Dip
Still on the topic of problem gambling, there has also been some good news from the UK Gambling Commission. They have recently announced that figures show that problem gambling dipped slightly in 2018. This dip now means that the percentage of UK citizens thought to have a problem in 2018 was 0.5%, down 0.1% from the previous year. If this is true, it’s clearly a great step in the right direction for the industry, and proof that the UKGC’s hard work is paying off.
There is an issue though: the UKGC used a much more detailed survey in the past and simplified it for their 2018 review. This means that it really is quite tough to compare survey results from different years.
UKGC Uncovers Big Scam
Perhaps the saddest story to recently feature the UK Gambling Commission comes from Leeds, where the mother of a cancer-stricken child was caught gambling money raised for her son. This was thanks to hard work from the UK Gambling Commission, who investigated thoroughly when they heard reports of a player losing large sums of money extremely quickly.
The woman involved was reported to the police and narrowly avoided a jail sentence, after spending around £100,000. Much of the stolen money has now been recovered from the sites it was spend at. This just highlights how important the UKGC is, and why it is a necessary presence in the UK gambling scene.
Maximum Stakes Cut at Fixed Odds Betting Terminals
It’s been in the pipeline for a long time, however 1st April saw the long-awaited cut to the maximum bet on fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs). It used to be the case that punters could bet a whopping £100 per turn on these machines, which led many to develop gambling issues. The UK Gambling Commission stepped in though, and it is now only possible to bet a maximum of £2 per turn.
There was however a warning from Neil McArthur, the chief of the UK Gambling Commission, who stated that the industry needs to be vigilant to ensure that problem gamblers don’t simply turn to a different way to feed their addiction.