GambleAware Unhappy With Card Blockers Used By Banks

GambleAware Unhappy With Card Blockers Used By Banks

British gambling charity GambleAware has criticized banks for failing to use adequate technology that could prevent gamblers from accessing gambling sites using their credit and debit cards.

New research reveals compliance details

New research commissioned by GambleAware and conducted by the University of Bristol suggests that the card blocking technology works well. However, it is not accessible to millions of gambling consumers. Banks are using card blockers that are designed to allow users to block their cards for accessing any gambling-related websites. The research suggests that about 40% of the current accounts that are serving about 28 million consumers, do not provide any card blocking features.

GambleAware Unhappy With Card Blockers Used By Banks

To date, only eight financial services firms offer blockers on some products and rangers, which includes some gambling-related sites. It further found that there were several shortcomings, even with the accounts that offered card blocking services. For instance, the feature can be started on a customer’s request but can also be easily turned off. Moreover, users can depend on e-wallets to circumvent the card blockers with ease.

GambleAware warns of issues

GambleAware is now calling on the British financial regulator to ensure that gambling blocks are made standard features for all types of cards- both credit and debit. They should also come with a time-release lock of at least 48 hours. The charity also seeks an awareness campaign.

Researchers suggest that about 500,000 consumers are using card blockers at the moment, by aggregating data from different financial firms. The data from one bank suggests that two to three transactions were being blocked per user, per month. This results in about 390,000 and 585,000 blocked transactions on their platform each month.

Mark Etches, the chief executive of GambleAware said,

“Keeping people safe from gambling harms requires banks to play their full part in providing consumers with effective means to block gambling transactions. While some banks have taken proactive steps to help shield their customers from gambling harms, the findings of this research indicate that improvements can and should be made. We encourage the banking industry to work together alongside the Government and regulators to implement the proposed recommendations.”

The UK Office for National Statistics suggests that £14.5 billion were spent on gambling in the country in 2018 alone. Gambling addiction could cost as much as £1.2 billion each year.

About sherlock

Sherlock Gomes loves to write and express his views on anything related to Gaming, Gambling, & Casino. He has been covering Gaming for more than two years now.