The UKGC has issued a reminder that the consultation on gambling with credit cards closes on November 6, 2019.
UK.- The UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) launched in mid-August a 12-week consultation on gambling with credit cards. As part of its attempt to collect evidence, the UKGC reminded industry stakeholders that the call will close on November 6.
The consultation kicked off on August 14 with the intention to explore the consequences of restricting or prohibiting the use of credit cards when gambling online. The UKGC said that it noted that the need for regulatory intervention would be more likely if evidence indicates insufficient consumer protections to reduce the risks of harm from gambling with borrowed money. “We said we would use the evidence submitted as part of this exercise to develop further detailed proposals for consultation,” said the UKGC.
In the first phase of the credit card consultation, the UKGC received 110 responses from a range of stakeholders including members of the public, debt relief charities, gambling operators, financial services and some individuals.
The UKGC said that they’d like to obtain further evidence about consumers’ motivations for using credit cards to gamble, and any specific benefits of using them.
“The preferred option for most who responded to the call for evidence was to prohibit gambling online with credit cards in order to achieve this aim. We will take the most appropriate course of action in view of any further evidence obtained during this consultation, alongside the data already submitted,” said the UKGC. “However, we also acknowledge that there could be unintended consequences if any action on credit cards is taken in isolation.”
“We note from responses to the call for evidence that where online gambling deposits are made through some e-wallets, the operator has no means of knowing which method the payment originated from. Unless this current lack of transparency is addressed, a prohibition or a restriction on gambling online with credit cards could be easily circumvented by making a credit card deposit into an e-wallet instead of a direct payment to the gambling operator.
“We will, therefore, need to prevent gambling operators from accepting any payments via e-wallets unless e-wallet providers can prevent credit cards being used for online gambling through their facilities. Or, in the case of regulatory measures short of a ban, we would need to ensure that any limits or controls on gambling with credit cards can be equally applied to the use of credit cards through e-wallets. We will be writing to e-wallet providers at the start of the consultation and we encourage them to consider, and provide details of, the solutions they can deliver to facilitate any regulatory change,” said the regulator.