The gambling industry in the UK has been growing at an increasing speed. While a number of betting shops and bingo premises have closed their doors, the number of online gambling sites has been on the rise.
UK regulators have been under increased pressure to promote responsible gambling, whilst changing the way they promote their brands and services. The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has made it clear that between now and 2021, the message that is sending is that operators must protect customers whilst delivering a more responsible message.
A tough combination of anti-money laundering regulation, problem gaming awareness and wage inflation have inflated cost lines. Although the industry itself is generating profit, it has also become increasingly challenging.
The various elements of money-laundering regulations is a very good thing. By keeping criminals off UK casinos online, legitimate players won’t be subject to collateral damage.
For casinos to ask proof of funds and income might not be enough for some. There are many people who aren’t too comfortable with discussing their finances. Sometimes it’s purely for privacy reasons, but also because they don’t want to attract any unwelcome attention from the taxman.
People still want to gamble regardless of rules and regulations. If more rules are in place to safeguard players’ interests, then they are more likely to commit to fewer casinos rather than going on the hunt for new casinos all the time.
The UKGC continues to fine casino operators who don’t play by the rules, be it offline or online. At some point, unwilling players will simply have to accept what is asked for them or they won’t have anywhere else to go.
Casinos and Advertising Practices
Reputable online casinos are highly unlikely affected by any of the updated regulations. It is the UK regulator’s intention not to restrict the marketplace, but instead to create a safe and secure platform for customers.
One of the main targets for regulators has been the advertising practices created by casino brands. Some casinos promoted cartoon characters from children’s literature in their TV ads. The UKGC didn’t take this on too kindly and resulted in a ban on such advertising practices.
Tighter regulations in the future for the online gambling market
Tighter regulations are already underway. As part of the casinos’ Know Your Customer procedures, players must provide proof of ID, payment and address. This is done both to safeguard players against any possible money-laundering attempts and to protect under 18-year-olds.
This comprehensive verification and ID check during the registration process would also deduce any withdrawal delays as well as protecting teenagers and minors from playing online.
As the online gambling industry continues to change, we will see more regulations being enforced in the market. This should not be an issue for reputable and trustworthy casinos, but it may pose troublesome for unsavoury casinos.
These regulations are, after all, in place to ensure that players have an entertaining online gambling experience on a safe and secure platform which is both fair and ethical