Will the new UKGC rules actually make a difference?

The question that everyone within the UK gambling industry is asking themselves is whether the proposed new Gambling Commission rules which are due to take effect on September 12th will actually make any difference to what can only be described as a ticking time bomb.

The new rules will mean that licensed online gambling operators will be required to monitor all of their customers and ensure that a specific list of indicators are met to ensure that any potentially harmful gambling behaviours are nipped in the bud.

The details of the new rules will be issued in June in order to give operators enough time to implement them before the September deadline.

It could of course be argued that there are already adequate provisions in place regarding the identification of punters who are classified as ‘problem gamblers’, but the issue is that many operators have been far too slow to intervene when the actions of these customers have been identified.

The new rules will require operators to have automated processes in place which will instantly spot the gambling and financial transaction patterns that are associated with customers who are at risk.

It will also be a requirement that any marketing activities by any operator such as contacting at-risk customers to inform them of various bonuses and promotions must stop.

According to Andrew Rhodes, the Chief Executive of the UK Gambling Commission, any operator who does not abide by these new rules will be punished.

Time and time again our enforcement cases show that some operators are still not doing enough to prevent gambling harm. These new rules developed following an extensive consultation, make our expectations even more explicit.

We expect operators to identify and tackle gambling harms with fast, proportionate and effective action and we will not hesitate to take tough action on operators who fail to do so.”

The big question has to be, will these rules actually make any difference?

According to George Kots from BestMegaReelSites.co.uk, the jury is out.

I have seen the Gambling Commission make statements like this many times before, usually as a result of government pressure, but we still see various operators paying scant regard to the problems which are suffered by punters who are experiencing problems with their online gambling.”

Admittedly, there are examples of some operators being punished with large fines but too many online sportsbooks and casinos are getting away with not putting adequate measures in place to solve this rapidly growing problem.

I sincerely hope that the new rules do make a difference but the Gambling Commission must ensure that ALL operators are closely monitored, otherwise, it could be a case of the Commission’s bark being worse than its bite”

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