Online gambling is rapidly gaining popularity all over the world. Unfortunately, as popularity grows, so does the number of people experiencing problems with it. According to reports from the National Health Service, people in the country suffer from gambling obsession and need help.
The negative impact of gaming is not new. One of the main reasons why we continue to encounter it is that players cannot accept gambling as a mere means of entertainment.
Self-exclusion of players in the UK is divided into all important segments of the industry. These cover bookmakers, casinos, bingo centers, and online gambling. All UK operators are legitimately entitled to implement self-exclusion assistance to their customers as an add-on.
There are over 23 million players in the UK and six percent of them participate in a self-exclusion scheme that can significantly help troubled players in the country and improve the image of the industry.
Fines issued by the UK Gambling Commission reached £ 18 million last year, including a £ 1 million fine for “deficiencies” in SkyBet’s self-exclusion mechanisms. The operator allowed 736 excluded customers to open and use accounts, about fifty thousand customers who were excluded themselves, received marketing material or an in-app push notification, and a staggering number of 36,748 excluded customers were not returned. Money after the account is closed.
The government’s decision to cut the maximum bet on fixed-odds terminals to £ 2 has proven that if the UK gambling industry continues to ignore warnings about failing to protect vulnerable customers, it will upset both the public and policymakers. The Gambling Commission will continue to vigilantly monitor its licensees, including increasing fines and, in the most egregious cases, revoking licenses.
There are, though, tools that aim to combat the adverse impacts of gambling and control the situation. One of these is GamStop.
It is a self-exclusion application designed to help gambling addicts in the UK. It is determined by The National Online Self-Exclusion Scheme Limited. All participating Internet sites allow players to restrict their assistance in online games or completely block their way to online casinos.
The prospect of being blocked seems to most of them too radical a measure; so many players are in no hurry to join the program.
In general, the platforms connected to GamStop possess their pros and cons. Below we will try to understand them and help you make a choice.
GamStop is a great tool for those who possess problems with gambling and need to limit the time they spend in the online casino.
- It is completely free and works with all UK Gambling Commission licensed sites. As such, every regulated casino in the UK market is part of GamStop. Previously, it was possible to choose whether to take part, but now assistance is necessary for everyone who wants to use the license of the British regulator.
- It allows you to select the duration of your exception. The smallest term is six months, and the maximum is five years, which is perfect for those who want to simply quit gambling.
While the program is undeniably very useful, its disadvantages are worth noting.
- The duration of self-exclusion. It cannot be less than six months, so if you just want a little break from the casino, say, a couple of weeks, GamStop will not help you with that. Consumers have not been able to clear their self-exclusion while the minimum period of withdrawal from games is active. After the expiration of a minimum period of six months, the exclusion will remain in effect until the consumer returns to GamStop with a request to remove him from the list or until the data retention period expires.
- It applies just to casinos licensed by the UKGC. Players can simply go to sites registered in other countries – many of them allow players from the UK and do not impose any limitations.
- Other people can also add you to the program. They only need to provide basic private data such as name, zip code, date of birth, and email address. To make matters worse, you won’t be able to release the lock till later its expiration date – if you didn’t plan on self-exclusion, this can be a very frustrating situation.
Is it worth choosing an online casino without GamStop?
As we mentioned, only casinos licensed by the UKGC are required to engage in the GamStop program. They receive the status of fair and safe, however, it does not indicate that sites with licenses from other jurisdictions are less reliable. These casinos additionally use comprehensive security measures, and their products have also been rigorously tested.
At the UK casinos without GamStop listed at Casino Wise, you can also take advantage of attractive newbie bonuses, both no-deposit and requiring a deposit. In the latter case, you can make a deposit using a credit card and other payment methods, which are not available at UKGC licensed casinos, as these casinos operate under offshore licences such as Malta Gaming Authority, Gambling Commission of Curacao, Government of Gibraltar, etc.
In addition to this, it should be noted that the verification procedure at such sites, as a rule, is much faster and does not require sending a large number of documents.
It cannot be denied that the GamStop blocking feature is extremely useful for those who need a break from gambling. In addition, if the casino is connected to this program, it means that it is licensed and controlled by the gambling executives, and such an institution can be trusted.
GamStop additionally has its drawbacks. Notable amongst them is the inability to choose an exclusion period of fewer than six months, as well as the fact that other people can register you in the program without your knowledge.
Thus, if it seems to you that you are out of control while performing at an online casino, you should probably resort to using GamStop. If the situation is not critical, it is better to think several times before joining it: even if you agree. If you go for self-exclusion, you may still play offshore – so what’s the use of it?
Infuriatingly humble organizer. Entrepreneur. Zombie guru. Professional creator. Future teen idol.