UK operators will soon be trialling a brand-new system that aims to prevent problem gamblers from moving between operators and sites without detection. The trial has been two years in the making, and today, we look at how it will work, what benefits it offers, and how it may affect online bingo players.
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we’ve all noticed that the government and regulatory bodies like the UK Gambling Commission are more concerned than ever about gambling harms.
So far, we’ve seen gambling adverts reduced and replaced by safer gambling messages, operators being fined or having their licences revoked after failing to engage with customers who are displaying signs of problem gambling, and a review of the outdated Gambling Act 2005 in a bid to bring it up to date with regards to online and mobile gambling. Plus, many online casino and bingo players are increasingly being asked to provide extra documentation to prove that they can afford to gamble.
Now, there’s a brand-new tool in the pipeline which members of the Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) will help to trial. It’s called “Single Customer View”, and it will be operated by GAMSTOP alongside the UKGC and the Information Commissioner’s Office.
What will the system do?
Essentially, the system will identify players who are most at risk in a “proportionate and effective” manner. It will be able to flag customers who appear to be at high risk or are showing signs of severe problem gambling by moving between gambling operators without any intervention being taken.
When will it go live?
Initially, the trial is expected to start in March. It’s not yet clear whether customers will be asked to take part or which brands will participate in the trial, although we know that the brands will be some of those belonging to current Betting and Gaming Council members such as Bet365, Entain, Paddy Power, Sky Betting and Gaming, and William Hill.
How will the system affect bingo players?
Although it’s yet to be confirmed, it’s highly likely that Single Customer View will be used to monitor and intervene with anyone who’s flagged as an “at risk” person, be it via online sportsbooks, casinos, poker or bingo sites.
Even though bingo players typically stake and spend less than their online casino counterparts, the rising availability of online slots and casino games at popular bingo sites mean that there’s just as much risk of bingo players developing gambling addictions.
Setting deposit limits, staying within budget, and making sure that you don’t spend too much time (e.g. over an hour) playing bingo games within the same session, are just some of the ways that you can stay in control of your relationship with gambling and have fun.