Gamblers in the UK will be given more support to stay safe while gambling online thanks to a new campaign from the UK regulator.
The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has announced the launch of a new public campaign focusing on nine specific ways that bettors can stay safe when gambling.
The campaign is based around raising public awareness of the safer gambling control tools and facilities that already exists, and of highlighting the work of problem gambling support groups such as GamCare and GambleAware.
In addition, the UKGC is also aiming to offer better all-round guidance for consumers on how they can monitor their betting activity when betting online with licensed operators.
One of the headlines of the new approach is a reminder to the UK public that all licensed online gambling firms are obliged to give their customers access to their historic account activity, which the regulator says will help customers to make informed decisions about their gambling. The UKGC is also aiming to raise awareness of the existing in-play safety tools, including game alerts that pop-up on screen at set times, reminding customers how much time they have been gambling for, whether they are betting online or using a gambling machine at a betting shop.
Consumers who may be concerned over how much money they are gambling are also reminded that they have the power to set limits on their gambling spend, before they engage with any gambling operator. Customers with UK licenced operators also have the power to ask for a gambling timeout, lasting for up to six weeks. And consumers are also advised that they should take ‘reality checks’ over why they are gambling. By thinking carefully about their motivations for gambling, they may be able to prevent a gambling problem from developing.
The UKGC is also keen to highlight the availability of help through various gambling charities, including the GAMSTOP self-exclusion scheme, which can enforce a longer period of gambling exclusion, with a minimum timespan of six months.
This new campaign is the latest from the UKGC as it seeks to expand its initiatives on raising customer awareness of their rights when gambling. Last month, the UKGC began a wide ranging campaign on consumer rights related to the requirements and safeguards that all UK operators have to provide to all customers when they register.
The flurry of activity around problem gambling awareness comes at a time when the UKGC itself is under increased criticism from politicians, while the current UK government is committed to reforming the 2005 Gambling Act during the course of its term.