Some prominent changes have been made to the gambling industry in the UK in the last two years, in order to ensure that the sector is more strictly regulated to protect both gamers and those who may be vulnerable, by making sure that gaming operators are made to take responsibility.
In the past month, the Gambling Commission has stated it will be enforcing additional rules and regulations with immediate effect, looking specifically at the online gaming field including online slots, poker, roulette and more.
What are the new regulations?
The new rules that have been implemented by the Gambling Commission are in reference to age and identity verification regulations on online gambling platforms.
To complement these new regulations, the Gambling Commission has also announced its new National Strategy. The new framework is intended to make it easier for education and prevention initiatives aimed at young people to be implemented across the country.
What will these new rules do?
The rules on age, identity and verification are intended to be considerably stricter than what was previously enforced.
These new age and identity checks are a part of a number of changes that have been introduced as part of the Gambling Commission’s Social Responsibility Code.
The commission has already outlined via an open consultation response the variety of changes that are being gradually enforced, with full explanations why they are needed to make online gambling both fairer and safer.
Why are they being implemented?
As previously mentioned earlier in this article, the intention of these new age and identity verification checks are to help make gambling safer. This includes providing an additional layer of protection against underage gambling.
Unfortunately, across the UK, statistics have shown that gambling among those under 18 has been on the rise.
An audit report, recently published by the Gambling Commission showed that the numbers had risen dramatically.
The number of children who had ended up suffering gambling-related harms had increased fourfold. This was only within a period of two years.
Consequently, this means that the estimated number of young people (between the ages of 11 and 16) who have been diagnosed as having compulsive gambling issues in the UK is a shocking 55,000 in total.
As a result of these alarming figures, the Gambling Commission has been put under considerable pressure to address the problem of underage gambling harms, hence the push for age and identity checks.
How will these regulations work?
In what way will these new regulations work? The new rules mean that online gaming operators now need to verify the ages and identities of all new customers who sign up onto their sites.
The new regulations mean that gambling firms will now be forced to implement these checks before new customers will be able to use, and make deposits on, their online casino accounts.
Prior to the recently implemented regulations by the Gambling Commission, there was a three-day grace period for online gambling operators, within which they could perform the necessary verification checks.
The problem with this three-day grace period, was that it ended up creating a loophole that facilitated underage gambling on a large scale.