Casino players in the United Kingdom have most likely heard about GAMSTOP at this point. The self-exclusion program has been showing in various news outlets because of its benefits to problem gamblers, as well as its shortcomings. By the end of 2018, all online casinos and gambling sites located inside of the UK will be required to participate in the GAMSTOP program. Therefore, it’s worth taking a look at how the system works, what the player has to do, and similar options that are already available.
Online Casinos On GAMSTOP
The GAMSTOP self-exclusion program is operated by The National Online Self-Exclusion Scheme Limited. This non-profit organization works alongside the UK Gambling Commission to assist players who wish to take a break from gambling online. Essentially, the program offers controls to any player that will restrict the gambling activities for that players within the United Kingdom. When signing up for this free service, the player will not be able to access online casinos and other gambling websites that hold a license with the UK Gambling Commission. The period of time in which gambling activities are restricted will be determined by the player.
Although GAMSTOP is free, the service will only work for players who live in the United Kingdom. This area served includes Northern Ireland. To use the GAMSTOP service, the player will have to provide the organization with important details. An e-mail address will be required to sign up, in addition to the player’s postal code and date of birth. The requested information is used to confirm the identity of players.
No player can sign up for the GAMSTOP service on the behalf of another individual. However, players can assist each other in starting and completing the process. Once a player has signed up for GAMSTOP, they will receive a confirmation e-mail. The contents of the e-mail will include pertinent details about the self-exclusion period. Players should take note that this self-exclusion program might take as many as 24 hours before it actually takes effect.
Once self-exclusion goes into effect, the player will be blocked from any gambling website operating with a license in Great Britain. GAMSTOP offers three options regarding the actual amount of time for self-exclusion. The player may choose a six-month block, a one-year block, or five years without access. It is worth noting that the self-exclusion continues automatically beyond the minimum period of time that was selected. All players must return to the GAMSTOP website and officially request to be taken off of the self-exclusion program.
A separate process for reinstating the player’s access will take place. After the player has registered, any changes in information must be reported by the player to GAMSTOP. It is up to the player to notify the organization about changes in name, address, or e-mail. Incorrect player information that is shared with online casinos can make the GAMSTOP program ineffective.
In a similar fashion, only the player can make use of GAMSTOP a success. The organization provides a support section for getting help and more resources about responsible gambling. Although this program restricts casino access, it will not remove the player from newsletters automatically. Players will have the responsibility of unsubscribing from e-mail marketing and removing themselves from social media gambling pages.
The gambling marketing that the player is exposed to cannot currently be eliminated, but it can be reduced by taking the right steps. Additionally, signing up for the GAMSTOP program will not affect deposits or withdrawals at online gambling websites. The player will have to contact casinos or betting sites directly to have funds returned. GAMSTOP not is affiliated with or responsible for any type of banking or payouts.
Unlike GAMSTOP, GamBlock is software that the player can download onto a computer or mobile device. The GamBlock programs have been around since 2000, giving the software almost two decades of responsible gambling experience behind its current release. This software is a full blocking system and has innovative built-in features to prevent gambling online. Once the player installs GamBlock, it will immediately restrict access to casinos online and betting sites. Players can choose the amount of time that the self-exclusion should last when downloading this software. While other application require the player to add new casinos to a list, GamBlock automatically tracks new gambling sites and blocks them.
The software also blocks gambling through proxy websites and cannot be circumvented by use of a VPN. If the player decides to reset a PC or mobile device to factory settings, the GamBlock software will still be in effect. GamBlock works by checking the data in each page search or request that is generated on the internet. It uses analytics to detect if any website offers gambling or betting opportunities.
On most platforms, the player will have the window or tab blocked as an attempt to reach the website takes place. The software also works on application with gambling downloaded to a device or other gambling activities that may not require an internet connection. An additional feature is the ability to block calls from gambling companies and prohibit the player from sending or receiving gambling-related text messages.
Although the software is a proven deterrent for problem gamblers, it is not free. The GamBlock software will be priced based on the device chosen and the needs of the player. With a development team behind, GamBlock continuously receives updates. The nature of online gambling allows the industry to move at a fast pace, so it is imperative for software such as GamBlock to keep up. Players can find more information about the updates to and version of GamBlock by visiting the program’s website.
The GamBlock system can be purchased as a single license for personal use or as multiple licenses. With the installation of GamBlock, corporate entities can prevent employees from using gambling sites or applications while on the premises. The same system also allows government agencies and buildings to block access to online gambling by any staff member or visitor. This comprehensive approach to gambling restriction makes GamBlock one of the most trusted applications on the market.
Net Nanny Software
Net Nanny is a name that may be familiar with gamblers and non-gamblers alike. This particular brand of software is the flagship product of ContentWatch. It offers numerous features that go beyond simple restriction to gambling websites. The software is also used to prevent underage individuals from accessing online gambling, adult content, or other websites based on parental discretion. Net Nanny has also seen a lot of publicity, making it a popular choice among individuals looking for an internet restriction solution. The company behind the software has been operating since 2001 and currently offers programs for multiple devices.
Players who wish to use Net Nanny can install the software on Windows and Mac operating systems. The mobile version of the program is compatible with iOS and Android phones and tablets. Filtering technology that drive the Net Nanny software is customizable, meaning that players can control exactly what they see. While it is ideal for preventing underage gambling, the Net Nanny software may not be the best choice for an adult problem gambler. It is efficient in blocking content in accordance with player preferences, but the player still has full responsibility over what can be accessed. Again, this particular software is not free. Players can choose what Net Nanny product works for them and the price will be calculated based on different options.
While it is known for its standard suite of Net Nanny products, ContentWatch also has business-grade options available to consumers that include web administration and other integrated features. The software has received multiple updates, although no changes have been made since 2013 according to the company website. Users can also find support options by accessing the website, including an account password manager and frequently asked questions related to the Net Nanny software.
Gamban is restriction software that is currently installed on over 30,000 devices across the globe. The company stresses the importance of blocking access to gambling websites, especially in the work environment. As a result, the business suite of gamban software is ideal for any commercial enterprise seeking to control what can be accessed on company devices. Gamban backs up its business software with the fact that gambling activities are the second-largest contributor to fraud.
Online casinos and other gambling sites are available 24 hours a day and every day of week. The use of gamban prevents the temptation by employees to gamble while at work. It effectively blocks every website for gambling in the world. In fact, the gamban software is known for blocking only gambling sites. Other forms of software may have difficulty differentiating between an online casino and another site that merely resembles gambling.
Business-grade protection through gamban gives the business and everyone in it unlimited access to restriction tools. The protection lasts for one year per individual and the license allows it to put on up to three devices. Gamban also offers solutions for institutions of education. The UK’s regulated market model is ideal for online gambling, but the issue of problem gambling has been a point of discussion for quite some time. This issue is especially true among university students who are away from home and currently have loans out for education.
In addition, many video games are now a part of the esports phenomenon and some these games have features that may be considered gambling. The latest figures show that more than 100,000 students in the UK have gambling debt. In order to combat the issue, gamban offers its services for free to students or faculty who have a university e-mail address. The address simply needs to be verified and added to the gamban database.
Gamban also works with online casino operators, but they are extremely strict about the process. Any casino online wishing to offer gamban to problem gamblers must be regulated and responsible. The casinos have access to purchasing a license for three devices over one year. This software cannot be uninstalled and the company makes exceptions or negotiations regarding its purchase. A handful of online casinos and betting sites have recognized the importance of giving players more options when they are at risk and include gamban on the website.
Self-Exclusion At Each Casino
Many online casinos have their own integrated self-exclusion tools available. While the mandate for all UK casinos to be part of GAMSTOP is near, many sites had resources in place already. The player completes the process by contacting casino support with a request for self-exclusion. Players can then set the period of time during which it is effective and be blocked from using the online casino. While the time period is flexible, most players opting into self-exclusion must do so for a minimum of six months.
Casinos also offer shorter “cooldown” periods that may last one week or a few weeks. Players can limit the amount of money they are allowed to deposit, as well as putting a cap on how much can be wagered during the week. Signing up for self-exclusion is fairly easy when using integrated online casino features. The casino has all needed player information, including the associated e-mail address, and can immediately block the player from accessing the site.
However, players should consider the risks of only using the self-exclusion tools provided by online casinos. The casino can only restrict player access to that website alone, or multiple websites that are part of the casino network. There is no control over the player simply going elsewhere and depositing money to start gambling again.
In addition, many casinos have not lived up to their promises. Players have reported signing up for self-exclusion, but were then able to access the casino or receive promotional e-mails from the casino. The responsible gambling issues shown by certain online casinos have led to major fines by the UK Gambling Commission. While self-exclusion tools are certainly a sign of good faith by online casinos, they may fall short of what a problem gambler needs to prevent further issues.