underage girl using ipad tablet to gamble onlineThe United Kingdom Gambling Commission has announced new regulations for online casinos last week. In hopes of reducing underage gambling, punters won’t be able to play without proving their ID first.

This will significantly change the way we play at various casinos, so some people aren’t happy with the resolution. However, according to UKGC, the changes are necessary.

“To guard against the risk of children gambling, new rules mean operators must verify customer age before the customer can:

  • Deposit funds into an account
  • Gamble with the licensee using either
    • Their own money
    • A free bet
    • Or bonus

The new rules will come into effect on the 7th of May, 2019.

The Reception

As already mentioned, some groups have doubts about this course of action. Still, it is deemed as an important step in making the British online gambling scene even safer.

This is why. 👇

What’s The Difference?

photo of uk passport-on a gray surfaceRight now, players can still gamble at online casinos without proving their identity. What they can’t do is withdraw their winnings.

In the near future, however, if a user isn’t identified, they won’t be able to do much more. This includes:

  1. Making a deposit
  2. Playing games for money
  3. Playing games in free mode
  4. Opting in casino promotions
  5. Claiming free bonuses

In other words, you’ll still be able to join new casinos but that’s about it. The operators will be required to prove your age. Thus, you’ll have to provide documents proving your ID for KYC purposes before you can continue.

This will effectively eliminate underage gambling at officially licensed casinos.

ID Verification Prior to This Regulation

coloured fingerprintsWhile the changes are plain and simple, they’ll affect the rules of online gambling operations quite a lot. The regulation that’s currently in effect states that:

“The operator has to confirm customer’s age 72 hours before their first withdrawal.”

This means that people of any age are allowed to join casinos, make deposits and play games. While people under 18 may not claim their winnings, they may still enjoy gambling. That’s where the problem lies according to the Commission.

Is This a Positive Change?

While we question the government’s decisions as much as anyone else, we can’t agree more with this solution.

✖️ What’s Getting Worse

The only disadvantage from the gambler’s perspective is that the verification process will now take place earlier. Instead of taking extra time to withdraw for the first time, players will have to wait before they can start gambling.

✔️ What’s Getting Better

On the other hand, the benefits are many:

  1. Illegal underage gambling will be reduced
  2. Withdrawal process will become faster
  3. Casinos won’t be able to benefit from players at risk
  4. The gambling industry as a whole will become more trustworthy

Plus, there’s one more thing.

REGARDING CASINOS ILLEGALLY DENYING WINNINGS

According to official data, 15% of user complaints have to do with casinos faultily denying winnings. Their justification? Not enough information about the user and their identity.

While it’s not unusual for gamblers to forget to send an ID or another document, this isn’t always the issue. By asking for more ‘necessary' information, some operators purposefully deny or make it difficult to claim rightful winnings.

colourful padlocks on a fenceWith the identification step moved to the beginning of the player’s online casino experience, this won’t be possible anymore. If you’re allowed to play, you’ll have to be allowed to claim what you win too.

So, this regulation doesn’t just solve the underage gambling issue. It also improves the overall safety of players and their money.

One of Many Recent Changes

The last week’s update on remote gambling regulation is just one of many recent changes. There are many other safety issues being worked by the official bodies, associations and non-profit organisations.

The other issues in question include:

These hot topics are often unpleasant for casino operators and sometimes for the players too. However, thanks to actions like this, improvements are already visible to the naked eye.

The industry is moving towards a safer, more trustworthy and secure virtual gambling environment. It’s getting easier than ever to enjoy casino games responsibly. Besides, it certainly won’t damage the public image of gambling either.

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