UK Gambling Commission holds two-day player safety meeting

UK Gambling Commission

The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) has hosted a two-day event in Birmingham, in an attempt to move forward with player safety measures.

As part of this, the commission intended to progress with a ‘single, industry-wide solution’ to reduce the harmful effects of gambling. Over 100 gambling and tech professionals were present, while 12 operators were represented.

‘Unpicking the challenges’

At the event, attendees were encouraged to share their thoughts and help the UKGC to ‘unpick the challenges’ faced in this market.

The Betting & Gaming Council (BGC) supported this initiative. Meanwhile, the Information Commissions Office was also represented.

Neil McArthur, Chief Executive of the UKGC, shared his thoughts on the event. His words were as follows.

“We recognise that keeping a customer safe where operators currently only have a partial view of a customer’s behaviour is a challenge.

“That is why we are bringing together experts from outside and within the gambling industry to explore how technology could create a single customer view, as it has the potential to significantly improve customer protection.”

A heated House of Lords

Earlier this week, the UKGC met with the House of Lords Select Committee in London. Here, McArthur and Dr Bill MoyesChairman of the Commission – were asked about the ‘social and economic impact of gambling’ in the UK.

McArthur and Moyes both defended the UKGC’s decision to adopt a ‘comprehensive National Strategy’. McArthur acknowledged that “a much tougher approach to compliance and enforcement” had been taken. However, he was unapologetic about this.

McArthur’s words were as follows.

“This was deliberate at changing the behaviour of operators since we had seen too many instances of failures being repeated.”

Changes in the UK so far 

In the past two years, various new restrictions have been introduced to UK gambling. This is the case for both digital and retail operators. Recently, suggestions have been made to cap online casino stakes at £2.

This resulted in the shares of William Hill and GVC to drop on Thursday morning. Software supplier Playtech was another name to receive a hit.

Along with the above, the current Gambling Act is also going to be reviewed by Boris Johnson‘s government.