Gambling Commission reminds gambling industry of its responsibilities under lockdown

The UK Gambling Commission has once again reminded operators in the UK of their responsibilities while parts of the country are currently under lockdown.

The UK Gambling Commission has urged operators to be vigilant during Britain’s latest coronavirus lockdown and expects them to follow the guidance issued to operators back in March 2020.

Operators urged to be cautious

In a letter from the Gambling Commission’s chief executive Neil McArthur, the Commission said that a higher degree of caution was required as people will be spending more time at home and more people may be “isolated and vulnerable.”

The Commission added that some players may gamble more while for others it may be their first time gambling. The regulator also explained that because professional sports will continue during the lockdown, people will have more betting options than they did during the initial lockdown in 2020.

Because of this, the Commission has said it expects operators to follow the initial lockdown guidance it issued last year.

The guidance

The guidance issued last year included instructions to identify customers who may be at risk of gambling-related harm, interacting with customers and understanding how impactful this interaction is.

On top of this, operators were told to review the threshold for interaction and ensure they were appropriate as many players’ financial status may have changed as a result of the pandemic.

The guidance also called for processes to ensure the customer base is constantly monitored and an end to reverse withdrawals.

In regards to the country’s latest lockdown, the Commission has instructed operators not just to interact with customers directly but to also interact more generally via methods such as safer gambling emails.

The Commission noted that operators must take “particular care” when taking new customers and that affordability checks for new customers must reflect the current environment.

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