UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has introduced new measures to restrict underage gamblers from betting on online gambling sites. According to the new rules, all online gambling operators will have to confirm the age of their clients before they accept wagers. Earlier a player could make a bet while the age-verification would take up to 72 hours.
The new regulations come into effect from Tuesday. It is to make sure that anybody betting on gambling sites are verified to be above 18. The new rules also include checking other details including name and address and ensuring that the player is not suffering from gambling addiction and is not a self-excluded gambler.
The new rules have been announced following the three-year national strategy on gambling which was released earlier in April. The gambling commission had said that they are committed to tackling the increasing gambling addiction and as such operators may expect strict compliance measures.
Earlier the gambling commission also issued letters to operators urging them to proactively address gambling addiction and not just merely comply with the regulations for the sake of compliance.
Citing the financial crunch facing the regulatory body, William Moyes, chairman, Uk Gambling Commission had also said that the extensive programs to be launched to curb problem gambling would require funds to the tune of £70m; however, the funds at hand from current provisions don’t suffice.
As such he had also recommended that the gambling levy be made mandatory. However, last week the UK government turned down the UKGC’s recommendation to introduce a compulsory gambling levy drawing widespread criticism.
Gambling addiction is increasing, and according to recent research, in the UK, it is at an all-time high among the age group 11 to 16. The study reveals that one in seven in that age group regularly indulge in gambling activities. It is also found that at least 55,000 children at a risk of gambling addiction.
The new measures introduced by UKGC is indeed a positive start that has also been supported by gambling operators. Earlier last week, GVC chief said that they are all for a blanket ban on televised gambling related adverts and against sponsorship of jerseys of football players.