Online casinos have been an integral part of human lives since 1996, but it was not until a few years later that responsible gambling casino departments started cropping up. A sector that, in the beginning, was somehow superficial took a significant role in ensuring safe gambling practices among online casino gamers. Working with regulatory bodies like the UK Gambling Commission, they now help to both protect players and to prevent problem gambling issues from arising in the first place. Here are ways in which these departments, together with regulatory bodies can protect individuals.
Protect Vulnerable Players
A good number of players are vulnerable to online casino gaming, and sadly, some casinos are capitalizing on this aspect by providing alluring promotions. This has seen the prevalence of different promos in the gaming scene. Thankfully, responsible gambling casino departments have been working overtime to ensure safe practices of online gambling sites with the sole objective of protecting vulnerable players. This has prompted nations, such as Lithuania, to ban several forms of casino bonuses.
The new law bars operators from using offers to lure gamblers to their sites, and this might help reduce the number of gamers signing up in casinos daily. Furthermore, such a law will help reduce gambling activities in online casino sites. After all, some players depend on bonuses to extend their gaming sessions in online casinos. Even if gaming sites insist on offering qualified players with various types of casino promotions such as international no deposit bonuses, free play, and free spins, responsible gambling casino departments ensure players have fair terms and conditions to follow.
In a bid to reduce the unreasonable dishing out of free offers to clients, the UK Gambling Commission fined Sky Vegas £1.2m for offering free spins to recovering addicts. The bonus required players to spend £5 at the casino and, in turn, receive 100 free spins that were wager free.
Ensure Ethical Marketing of Casino Products and Services
Responsible gambling casino departments have been vocal when it comes to the marketing of casino products and services to players. This is due to the increase in unethical marketing strategies by different operators. For instance, it has been reported that gambling firms are among the heaviest radio advertisers during school runs, thus exposing millions of children to gambling activities. Another notable aspect is the use of aggressive marketing strategies that have seen an increase in new signups in casinos over the years. Responsible gambling casino departments have been pushing for casino advertisement reforms in various countries to keep this from happening. Their persistence has led to regulatory changes in multiple countries.
For example, in the United Kingdom, the government has enacted laws that prevent irresponsible gambling advertising practices. For instance, companies are barred from providing misleading information to customers. It is also against the law to exclude important information from gambling advertisements. Recently, the responsible gambling casino departments in the UK were supported by a group of parliamentary members pushing for the complete ban of gambling advertisements on TVs and online platforms. Furthermore, they wanted the end of unscrupulous VIP schemes which contribute a significant part of the industry’s income.
Other countries like Russia, Scandinavia, and Finland have a partial ban on gambling advertisements. Operators cannot advertise in cinemas and TV. Kosovo and Albania have a complete ban on gambling advertisements.
Help Prevent Underage Gambling
One of the fascinating facts about online games is diversity making them accommodating to different punters. This has catapulted the rise of underage gambling, with young audiences finding slot machines to be easy and exciting play. To contain underage gambling, responsible gambling casino departments have been at the forefront in ensuring operators adhere to the minimum gambling age. Some organizations have even convinced governments to raise the minimum online casino gaming age to reduce the gambling population.
Currently, different countries have varying minimum gambling ages, with a majority being 18 years. To expound further, most European countries, for instance, Portugal, Croatia, Finland, and Norway, have a minimum gambling age of 18 years. On the other hand, countries like Egypt, Estonia, and Greece only allow gambling to citizens 21 years and above. Malta, a country housing headquarters to multiple online casinos, only permits citizens of 25 years and beyond to gamble online. Note that each casino must include the minimum gambling age at the website’s footer.
To guarantee players signing up for accounts are of age, operators request for the date of birth during signing up of accounts. Also, responsible gambling casino departments, in conjunction with different regulatory bodies, make sure operators conduct account verification to confirm the information provided is accurate. That is by prompting clients to share copies of documents such as IDs or passports and utility bills, among others. Any client who fails to provide the copies is restricted from carrying out any gambling activities in online casinos. This has successfully helped prevent underage gambling.
Ensure Client Payments are Protected
The number of real money casinos continues to rise exponentially, as are online casino transactions. Since you have to deposit actual money to play for real cash prizes, clients have no choice but to share sensitive banking information with operators and trust them with their cash. The good news is that online gamers have responsible gambling casino departments working round the clock to ensure customers, their payments, and banking information are safe. Operators have security measures to guarantee customer payments are safe to avoid any hitches with the regulatory bodies and the responsible gambling organizations.
For example, online gaming sites have SSL data encryption technology, which masks customer banking information and prevents access by unauthorized personnel. Furthermore, operators have HTTPS protocol that provides customer security on the site. When making your first payments, you will have to pass the authentication check by uploading the necessary documents, including copies of your passport and utility bills. Besides, you may have to pass the two-step authentication procedure depending on the payment method you are using.
Some online casinos will even require you to provide a one-time verification passcode every time you initiate a transaction. These security measures have helped increase the safety of players’ payments and banking information. They have also reduced money laundering and credit card fraud among players.
Have Helped Come Up with Self Exclusion Programs
One of the biggest successes of responsible gambling casino departments is that they have helped initiate self-exclusion programs across different casinos worldwide. The self-exclusion program is a working method that prevents players from becoming gambling addicts. Using the option, you can exclude yourself from gambling by signing an agreement at the comfort of your casino account. Note that you are free to decide how long to exclude yourself from gambling activities. You can choose to lock yourself from your casino account for six months or even a year.
During this period, you cannot log into your account, so you cannot play any online casino games. The operator will also not share any promotions with you during the self-exclusion period. The program has seen a significant number of players avoid gambling addiction effortlessly. In addition to the self-exclusion programs, responsible gambling casino departments offer free counseling to players with gambling problems.
Right now, every gaming site has a responsible gambling casino department with contacts you can use to reach out to the representatives for help. Through programs like self-exclusion and player counseling, these organizations have been able to impact the lives of different punters across the globe and ensure safe gambling practices. Note that different casinos have different self-exclusion terms and conditions, so make sure you read through the information provided by the operator to learn more.
From the information above, it is clear that responsible gambling casino departments are crucial in the online gambling scene. Their main aim is to ensure online casinos operate within specific guidelines which do not compromise customers’ safety, mental well-being, and financial health. However, it’s important to also keep in mind organizations like IBAS, Gamblers Anonymous, and GamCare when help is needed.