Problem gambling has been a major concern in the UK since the pandemic and the numbers continue to rise. New UK regulations are expected to soon go into effect that will help to curb addiction and provide additional resources for gamblers. Aside from legal changes, operators are also taking steps to update Responsible Gaming policies and to ensure that users have the tools they need to set limits. Not only are changes being made by operators, but payment processors are also taking action to help the fight against problem gambling.
PayPal has introduced GamBan software, which has been designed to provide gamblers in the UK with an option to prevent any gambling transactions using their mobile devices. GamBan is also effective on a PC. It has already helped players maintain control over their spending. The software can stop all browser access to UK gambling platforms that use Paypal. This is not a new piece of software. In fact, GamBan has been used since 2015 and works with GamStop in the United Kingdom. The goal is to prevent access to PayPal casinos to help with the increasing issue of gambling addiction.
Once the software is in place, all payments to sportsbooks, online casinos, or online lotteries will be banned when using the PayPal account. GamBan is also available with other payment providers such as Neteller.
Other Methods Widening the Safety Net
While PayPal and Neteller are two of the most used digital payment processors, there are other methods of payment that are used online. Most online casinos will provide a wide range of options so that players can safely and easily manage real money accounts. Most players prefer to use options that do not require sensitive data to be provided at a casino site. These options, such as Paysafecard, Bitcoin, Neosurf, and Trustly have become quite popular. GamBan does not affect these methods since players will be purchasing vouchers or cryptocurrencies before playing online.
However, due to the limits set forth with prepaid cards, some gamblers will prefer to use their bank accounts so they can conduct larger transactions. By the end of 2021, 11 banks in the UK have started to allow players to block gambling transactions. The first high street bank to introduce this option was Barclays which was followed by banks like HSBC, Lloyds, NatWest, and MBNA.
The UK has taken many steps to address problem gambling and all websites with a licence from the UKGC are required to be involved with GamStop. However, there are no mandates for banks or other payment processors to offer services for blocking access to gambling websites.
The fact that major processors like PayPal are taking an interest in curbing the gambling problem in the UK is uplifting. The main benefit of GamBan is that it not only blocks access to websites operating in the UK but also prevents one from accessing any offshore website. Since many black market operators are not regulated, this also adds to the level of safety for online gamblers.