The trial’s aim is to identify those identified at risk of harm to ensure they are protected across all regulated companies. The scheme will prevent customers who have exhibited signs of severe problem gambling, or as being at a high risk, from simply moving to another operator without appropriate interventions being undertaken.
For some customers this may mean additional safeguards, whereas for others they may be prevented from betting entirely with other operators.
This approach also ensures we are not infringing on the personal data of the overwhelming majority of people who bet safely and don’t want their data shared in a national database of everyone who bets.
Due to data sharing concerns raised by the Information Commissioner’s Office, regrettably the trial has been delayed for nearly two years. Despite the delay, work on the project has recommenced and we are moving at pace to ensure that we are in a position to test the system by the end of March this year.
Gambling Minister Chris Philp has previously said that the establishment of this scheme is “an important step towards protecting vulnerable people".
BGC members are investing over a million pounds in this trial alone, to allow fast, proactive intervention with an aim to prevent incidents of problem gambling across all online regulated betting and gaming operators.
The trial scheme will also be governed by a strict code of conduct and controls around how operators should engage with these customers and how this information can be used.
Wes Himes - Executive Director for Standards and Innovation for the Betting and Gaming Council said: “I am delighted with the commitment from BGC members and the significant financial investment they are undertaking to get on with delivering this scheme quickly.
“Whilst many companies put forward proposals for this system, it was clear that GAMSTOP stood out from the rest. They are uniquely placed as they currently operate the online gambling self-exclusion scheme which has helped more than two hundred and fifty thousand people over the last five years.
“We are committed to ensuring the trial scheme which focuses on those most at risk is proportionate and effective. We are getting on with the work of change and once again, demonstrating that despite the challenges and complexities, when it comes to safer gambling, technology is our friend.