The Gambling Commission watchdog agency has started an investigation into online casino company 888 to see if they are doing enough to protect their customers.
Most casinos are expected to have socially responsible tools to help punters manage their gambling and help with gambling addiction. Some of the most common tools are “self-exclusions,” which allow a person to voluntarily prevent themselves from gambling for a defined length of time. Typically, those exclusions last for about six months.
Bookmaker William Hill recently blamed them for a loss of profits, which gained them a lot of prominence among gambling circles.
Another tool used to treat or prevent gambling addictions is the “time-out” feature. They are put onto gambling sites to allow a player to prevent themselves from gambling for a given timeframe. Online gambling sites must allow for 24 hour, 7 day, 30 day, or up to six weeks off of their site.
888 casino says it works to be socially responsible and fair to all of its players, and provide players with a safe, fun environment for their online gaming. They said in a statement that they plan to cooperate fully with the Gambling Commission while the review is going on and make sure that they are doing business the right way.
Since the investigation was announced, shares of the online casino went down by 7pc to 278p. The casino will likely face a fine and have to change the way it does business in order to better comply with the online gambling standards. Mostly, they want to make sure that all online casinos have a full understanding of what the rules mean, and what they have to have on their websites in order to fulfill their social obligations.
The industry watchdog has stepped up enforcement of rules designed to protect gamblers and ensure that all online casino operators are doing business in a socially responsible manner. Standards were changed in May 2015 to include rules against deceptive advertising. Among other things, all casinos were required to define what they meant by free spins, bets, and explicitly state how customers would qualify for the promotions.
888 casino is not the first operator to come under investigation relating to the enforcement crackdown.
Recently, Guernsey-based BGO Entertainment was the first company levied with a fine for violating those rules. The Gambling Commission ordered a fine of £300,000 for a series of misleading ads on the company website and those of its affiliates between 2015 and 2016. The nine company ads and fourteen affiliate ads dealt with promotions the company ran on their website and were deemed misleading under the new rules.
The increased enforcement has led to more fines but also use of public pressure and bad press to keep casino operators following the socially responsible guidelines and codes of the Gambling Commission.
The Gambling Commission will not comment on the 888 casino investigation while it is still ongoing. 888 casino will release a new statement when they have more information to share.