It’s no secret that the UK has some of the most rigorous gambling laws globally. Whilst strict rules might not appeal to everyone, the fact is – such laws exist to protect online casino players.
Furthermore, before organisations like GamStop came along, all we had was willpower to reign in those gambling demons.
Who is in Control of UK Gambling Laws?
It is the Gambling Commission that is tasked with providing licenses to the companies running online casinos, bingo platforms, lotteries, arcades, sports betting, gambling software providers, and so on.
Licenses are not given away willy nilly. Furthermore, UK gambling operators in Britain aren’t legally allowed to advertise to consumers without one.
To start, all service providers must pay a registration fee to apply. They must also meet multiple compliance requirements to maintain their regulated status.
How are UK Casino Sites Held Accountable for Responsible Gambling?
The main objective of the Gambling Commission is to protect the vulnerable and young from gambling exploitation, maintain a fair and transparent gambling experience, and keep the space free from financial crime.
Once a license has been given, the online casino must comply with strict licensing rules – such as regular testing of RNGs and all game titles. This also includes annual audits, KYC (aimed at anti-money laundering), transparent fees, protection of customer funds, and much more.
The LCCP (License Conditions and Codes of Practice) sets out the necessary measures needed for online casinos to maintain a license. Whilst we couldn’t possibly list all of the requirements each gambling platform must comply with, we have listed a few to give you an idea.
All UK betting platforms must:
- KYC (Know Your Customer): assess any potential risk faced by you, ensure you are over 18 years old, identify your financial vulnerability (if any), validate who you are with photo ID and proof of address, and monitor all transactions
- Protect Customers Funds: keep client funds separate from that of the business. Notably, there are different levels of protection. This includes 1) no protection against insolvency, 2) medium, and 3) high. The details of which must be disclosed to the customer
- Customer Care: gambling sites are required to make all players aware of the risks involved and how addictive it can be. They are also obliged to offer you the opportunity to restrict your gaming time with ease. We talk about self-exclusion and limits shortly
If a licenced casino fails to meet all of the requirements set out by the Gambling Commission’s LCCP – there will be consequences.
Companies can even be punished for missing out on key paperwork when sending regular audits. Sanctions include anything from a fine or revocation of a license to being taken to court and even prison depending on the severity.
How can I Gamble Responsibly?
Here at casino-bonus.me.uk, we understand that to kick a habit, sometimes a little more than sheer determination is needed. As such, there are ways in which you can gamble responsibly and personally take the bull by the horns.
Formed in 2018 by the Gambling Commission, GamStop is a self-exclusion scheme aimed at players who struggle to keep a lid on spending when it comes to online gaming and betting. For those unaware, all online casinos regulated by the Gambling Commission are required to be registered with the scheme
By joining the GamStop self-exclusion scheme you can now easily remove yourself from the grips of gambling addiction. Crucially, this is without relying on self-control alone.
Up to 24 hours after registering with GamStop, you will be excluded from all sites licensed in the UK for between 6 months to 5 years (your choice).
This will prevent you from accessing an existing account, as well as creating a new one – across the board. If you are not sure about committing to a 6 month exclusion via GamStop, you will find that most casino sites will enable you to self-exclude manually on that particular site.
Set Deposit and Betting Limits
Setting limits is the go-to way to try and maintain control over your gambling. This will usually be offered to you upon signing up with a new casino. The provider will give you the option of setting yourself predefined deposit and betting limits.
Limit options usually include a time frame of a day, week, or month. To give you an example, you might be paid monthly and want to limit yourself to spending no more than £300 per month.
Once you reach £300, you will not be able to deposit any more until then next month comes around. This limit principle can also be applied to your stake on the casino site.
Ad Blocking Software
Many people find that ad-blockers or software packages can help greatly when it comes to trying to avoid triggers. This way you are not innocently browsing the web and being targeted by casino ad campaigns.
There are also free extensions that can easily be added to your browser to disable ads from showing on web pages. This includes social media adverts, pop-ups, banners and YouTube ads.
Time-Out Control feature
Another option we at casino-bonus.me.uk like is the time-out feature. This is a tool offered by licensed casinos to encourage responsible gambling. The vast majority of license holders will offer you the option to remove yourself from the site – which is usually anywhere from 24 hours to 6 weeks.
GamCare is a non-profit organization offering free support, advice and information to anyone who has been negatively affected by gambling.
The charity provides access to a free phone number, live chat, group chats, and a messaging forum. You can also access resources such as an anonymous self-assessment, interactive workbook PDFs, goal planners, a gambling and mood diary, and more.
Responsible Gambling UK: The Bottom Line
We at Casino-bonus.me.uk believe that gambling should be seen as a form of enjoyment and leisure, not as a means to make money.
However, If you’ve gone past this point and recognise you need help, there is no shame in that.
Ultimately, there is help available to ensure you gamble responsibly such as GamStop self-exclusion, setting limits, utilizing time-out, and free support from GamCare.