The UK Gambling Commission has announced that as from the 14th of April 2020, gambling operators may no longer allow consumers in the UK to use credit cards to gamble.
This ban comes in the wake of the Commission’s review of online gambling and the Government’s Review of Gaming Machines and Social Responsibility Measures. A public consultation was carried out between August and November 2019.
Research indicated that a significant proportion of online gamblers using credit cards to gamble are classified as problem gamblers, and a greater number are at some risk of harm.
The Commission acknowledged that while credit cards were merely a method of convenience for some consumers, consumers were also commonly observed behaviour to chase losses to a greater extent, due to the easy access enabled by credit cards. Thus, it was concluded that the risk of harm was too high to allow the use of credit cards to persist.
The ban will cover all forms of land-based and online gambling but will not extend to non-remote lotteries (where payment is made face-to face).
The Commission has stated it will continue to evaluate the ban, watching closely for any unintended circumstances for consumers, and will also continue to work on other regulatory efforts to reduce gambling harm. This includes a review of the UK Gambling and changes to licence conditions.
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