UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has revealed that it has managed to make progress on ensuring safer gambling in collaboration with the industry.
The country’s major regulatory body has previously unveiled three challenges to make gambling safer and reduce gambling-related harm for British users and has joined forces with the industry to make progress on the matter.
The partnership between the industry and the watchdog will lead to restrictions under which individuals under 25 years of age would be prevented from being recruited by gambling operators to their VIP schemes. Apart from that, the parties pledged to make a joint effort to protect children and young adults from extensive online gambling advertising, and the intensity of play, including turbo buttons and fast spin speed, would be removed. Apart from this, the UKGC encourages gambling companies to go further with the restrictive measures and do even more in order to guarantee a secure gambling environment to its customers.
According to expectations, the new approach would accelerate the process to protect British people from gambling-related harm. It was officially unveiled by Neil McArthur, CEO of the UKGC, in October 2019 and in January 2020 working groups consisting of senior industry leaders were created. The groups’ work is concentrated on safer gambling advertising online, the use of VIP bonuses and other incentives and the use of safer product design.
Three Working Groups Making Progress on Major Areas Outlined by UKGC
The British gambling industry has made progress in the three major areas outlined by the UK Gambling Commission.
The first working group was formed to concentrate on the use of VIP incentives, and more specifically, to develop an industry code to address poor practices regarding incentivisation and treatment of so-called VIP customers also known as high-rollers. The operators have agreed to no longer recruit individuals under 25 years of age to high-value customer schemes. Apart from that, all players would be required to pass thorough finance checks to ensure due diligence before they are given the chance to qualify for high-value customers incentives. Also, full audit trails would be required for player reward programmes.
The second working group specialises in ensuring safer gambling advertising online, especially when it comes to protecting underage individuals, young people and vulnerable adults from being targeted by online gambling ads. The new rules are set to be enforced in July 2020. The working group decided to make sure that customer data is guaranteed better and more consistent use of customer data is ensured. A new approach to guarantee that online gambling ads target only people over 25 years of age and vulnerable groups in social media platforms are not accessed by such advertising is to be implemented.
The last one of the three working groups was tasked with developing an industry code for game design and responsible product. The commitment of gambling operators included the removal of some games’ features that may encourage customers to spend a lot of time and money playing the game, the implementation of a minimum spin speed on all slots, the removal of split-screen slots that have been associated with customers’ potential loss of control.