GAMSTOP Releases Report Showing Self-Ban Exclusions Down

GAMSTOP, an online gambling self-exclusion service, has published a report  on data collected during the COVID-19 lockdown. The UK government led body showed that the number of self-exclusions has surprisingly dropped over the last two months.

By: Mark Patrickson

Harmful Betting Habits on the Wane

The online poker industry has done well since the lockdown started. A five-year high for traffic was reported and games are as soft as ever with many new players signing up.

With the lockdown situation providing a tough test for everyone’s boredom threshold maybe this is no surprise.

What is surprising is that while player numbers rise the number of self-exclusions has fallen.

GAMSTOP’s figures show that in the month leading up to March 23rd 2020 there were 7,000 new registrations and self-ban extensions. From the month beginning March 23rd there was a fall to 6,700.

This kind of data shows that casino and poker site operators are fulfilling their side of the bargain with offering some protection for vulnerable gamblers.

Fiona Palmer, chief executive of GAMSTOP said: “Our data shows that GAMSTOP is continuing to provide important support to vulnerable consumers during lockdown and thousands of new users are choosing to exclude themselves from online gambling.”

No Turning Back

The thing with self-excluding yourself from a gambling website is that there is no turning back. Once you’ve clicked the button the operator is legally bound to sticking to the agreement.

Fiona Palmer continued: “Once a consumer has registered with us they cannot cancel their self-exclusion prematurely and this gives them time to find specialist help and treatment from charities, the NHS, or use other blocking services to protect themselves.”

The options are self-excluding for six months, one year, or five years and there is no negotiation later on. That said, the number of players who attempt to overturn their ban is on the rise.

Before the lockdown there were approximately 1,000 people contacting GAMSTOP every month, pleading to be allowed to play again. Post-lockdown this has risen to 400 every week.

No doubt the boredom factor is at play here with many players promising themselves that they will bet responsibility in the future.


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