The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has proposed a new set of rules that would significantly decrease misinterpretation of gaming guidelines and further guarantee customer protection.
UKGC Reveals Extra Measures for Safer Gambling
The UKGC has been looking to iron out any lingering wrinkle in the existing gambling legislation in the country. As per the latest proposals, the Commission will look to clear any ambiguity from the language of operators and establish clear-cut rules that all operators must abide by.
So far, operators were free to accept wagers from customers who haven’t confirmed their identity. This is about to change with the UKGC now establishing the same set of rules for both deposits and withdrawals.
To make sure that underage gambling is kept to a minimum, the commission will also reduce the 72-hour period during which casinos need to confirm a user’s identity. As per the latest rules, such verifications will have to come immediately after registration and prior to any deposit.
In fact, operators will have to suspend any depositing options from users’ accounts until the identity of the person has been confirmed.
Complaining Not for the Right Reasons
The Commission found out that 15% of complaints were lodged by users who said that the operators demanded identity verification from them upon withdrawals, but not upon depositing. While the TOC of all licensed operators clearly outlines this, the UKGC is changing the rule to apply to both withdrawals and deposits.
This is expected to dissipate confusion, but also to allow the regulators to weed out the percentage of underage gamblers. Furthermore, the Commission will also limit the ability of players who haven’t registered and confirmed their identity to access even the free versions of the available iGaming products.
This move comes amid reports that while the number of addiction in the UK remains the same, child gamers have increased their number several-fold. This increase is not necessarily linked to gambling activities, with youngsters trading collectibles between themselves or wagering on the outcome of certain games between themselves.
Though it’s a form of gambling, it’s not necessarily linked to the traditional iGaming products we’re accustomed to.
Measures Designed to Add the Proverbial Extra Layer of Protection
The measures have been well-met within the government, too. Jeremy Wright, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, had the following to say:
“These significant changes mean operators must check someone’s age before they gamble, and not after. They rightly add an extra layer of protection for children and young people who attempt to gamble online. By extending strong age verification rules to free-to-play games we are creating a much safer online environment for children, helping to shut down a possible gateway to gambling- related harm.”
The government has been taking multiple steps towards limiting the harm from gambling, including increasing the tax on remote gambling revenue and slashing the maximum stake for the fixed-betting odds terminals (FOBTs).
The latest measures make perfect sense and the Commission is fine-tuning the industry for a more consumer-focused experience.