Online casinos are the only safe establishments where gambling and betting activities can be carried out without the fear of contracting covid. This holds true even today, especially since new strains of the coronavirus have been detected in the UK. Throughout 2020, this led to a big boom in the online betting and gambling segment, but new rules have been hinted at by the new government to control all forms of online betting and gambling in the country. Although the Gambling Act of 2005 has not yet been amended or replaced, new rules will soon become a part of the present laws that govern betting in the UK.
New Rules to Restrict and Control Online Gambling in the UK
It was announced back in December 2020 that much stricter control will be levied on all online casinos, as well as the games they offer. This includes a thorough check to find which of the many establishments and casino games are breaking the rules. Although it was only an announcement, and most of the new laws have not yet been put into place, the online gambling and betting industry has already started suffering from loss of revenue generation in 2021.
Let us first take a brief look at the possible new changes and regulations that might be brought in by the government very soon to restrict online casinos and their patron gamblers alike. Doing so will provide us with a better understanding of the situation and how it is affecting the sector even now:
- Chances are that VIP schemes for patron members might either be ruled out completely or they could be allowed in a very limited manner.
- Consequently, the loyalty points system will either lose meaning, or it might need to be utilised in some other way.
- Self-exclusion via sites like Gambleaware and GamStop will become more powerful with a possibility of legal obligations empowering their efforts to stop gambling addicts from betting online.
- Self-help tools to restrict people from gambling away too much of their money could now be made mandatory and not optional.
- All online casinos operating in the UK might need to share their player activities with each other, so as to prevent them from overspending, irrespective of the establishment.
- Better deposit protection standards are expected, where every player’s money deposited in an online casino will not be completely lost if the business goes bankrupt.
- Gambling establishments will not be allowed to sponsor footballers and other popular sports personalities.
How Are the Online Casinos Coping with these New Developments?
After seeing such a good year, even the best online casinos are having a hard time in 2021. To summarise what was already discussed, this is a result of the following factors primarily:
- Some prominent figures are blaming the online betting sites as being a reason behind the average Brit’s depreciated financial status.
- Several illegal and fraudulent online casinos made it worse by cheating numerous gamblers online.
- The employment rates have improved, but people’s disposable incomes have not even gone back to their previous standards yet.
- Many of the players are not sure how the new rules will come into effect and when, so they are keeping their activities limited for now.
In order to cope with these new developments, online casinos are now concentrating on improving their reputation and changing the way that they are being viewed by their potential customers. Some of the coping measures taken include:
- Paying attention to risky gamblers, so that they do not end up overspending.
- Teaming up with gambling addiction prevention sources for finding and helping potential gambling addicts.
- Offering better bonuses with improved value.
- Refreshing their present collection of slots with new games with lower house advantages.
- Giving attention to each customer with 24×7 customer care.
- Providing more options to deposit and withdraw.
They are aware that vigilant casino review sites such as online casinos will take heed of these new developments and announcements, which in turn would help the online casino industry in the UK to cope and regain their reputation again. The site only reviews legally compliant and regulated online casinos, so it is also good news for the players. Not only can the online casinos use these blogs to get their attempts to improve standards across to the target audience, but the target audience will also be able to take advantage of the promotional bonuses, while receiving better attention and care from the casinos than they did before.
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Why Has the UK Government Decided to Clamp Down on Online Gambling?
2020 will be remembered forever as the cursed year which saw the entire world reeling in fear of a global pandemic that has killed well over 2.2 million people in less than a year’s time. However, death was not the only threat that the pandemic will be remembered for, since a range of other disasters also stemmed from it over the months. Aside from the immediate effects of covid itself, it also forced us all into multiple lockdowns, leading to massive financial problems which affected people individually and collectively. Consider the pandemic to be a chain of bad events which where all interconnected, and working collectively against not just business, but at times, basic survival itself.
Video calls, online offices, online education, social media, online games, online casinos, online shops, and the internet in its numerous other forms kept people entertained, hopeful, interconnected, busy and updated during the worst months of 2020. However, as unemployment rates kept rising, despite the government’s extended furlough scheme, people simply began to run out of money. Entire industries had to shut down during the lockdowns, while others tried to make do with the least number of personnel possible.
This led to massive hikes in unemployment across the world and in even developed nations such as the UK itself. The rate at which people started losing jobs was alarming and when people do not have money for the essentials, multiple non-essential industries would naturally be affected by a consequent drop in sales as well. Even before Boris Johnson decided to act, the initial boom which online casinos saw during the early days of the pandemic was already drying up, with fewer people having the means to bet anymore.
Unfortunately, for those players who were already addicted to gambling, the loss of means meant that they would end up digging into their savings, assets etc., just to have a chance at trying their luck once again. Also, several new online casinos had popped up during this time to take advantage of the lockdown boom. Most of the non-established, new online casinos were not properly regulated or even licensed by a well-recognised licensing authority. As a result, playing at these casinos meant that the players had little to no chance of ever winning in the first place.
With vaccines coming out, and the employment rates improving with time, the government finally decided to shift their focus on to the online gambling scene in the UK, in an effort to control their influence and reach on people. Action will also be taken against illegal and shady establishments, which either cheat, tamper with or have not yet complied to the set rules in some way.
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