Responsible gambling is a crucial component of the gambling industry in every country, including in Spain. It aims to provide players with safe and healthy gaming practices, which can be achieved if they gamble within their means. Self-exclusion is the most effective tool for responsible gambling promotion. Using it, individuals get the opportunity to reduce the risks of developing a destructive habit via problem gambling or recover from one.
Losing control over the time and funds you spend at casinos or bookmakers may lead to bankruptcy and even psychological disorders. Studies show that 76% of people who encounter problem gambling have proven to get chronic depression. They may start abusing alcohol or drugs, trying to escape reality. One of the solutions is to activate a self-exclusion tool.
Understanding Self-Exclusion Tools
Self-exclusion tools are programs created to encourage responsible and safe gaming among potentially problematic punters. Their principle is based on removing a player’s access to online casinos and bookmakers. The self-imposed ban from gaming platforms is set for a specific period. A permanent ban is also an available option.
Over time, as technologies advanced, more comprehensive self-exclusion tools like GamStop were introduced. The latter helps UK players break out of their problem gambling habit. By registering in the system, they get blocked out of all casinos with UKGC licenses. However, those players who have registered in the program, still find a way to gamble not on GamStop as those sites don’t have a UKGC licence and are still available in the United Kingdom.
The RGIAJ adopts the same principle as GamStop. This is a self-exclusion program set up by the Spanish government.
Types of Self-Exclusion Tools
In all jurisdictions and markets worldwide, operators are obliged to promote responsible gambling and give access to self-exclusion programs. The most reliable casinos also provide contacts of organisations like GamCare that anonymously help players affected by problem gambling. This help is always free.
Some of the most effectively operating self-exclusion systems and organisations are:
Players can set time-based exclusions themselves. Normally, this is anywhere between 6 months to 5 years. The cool-down periods, however, are much shorter (from 24 hours to 30 days). If a player signs up for this, they can’t access their account either via the casino site or app.
Account suspension is another widely engaged self-exclusion method. It implies temporarily suspending the problematic player’s account by prohibiting their access to gambling activities, payments, and promotions.
It’s also an option to set limits on deposits per month. If you reach the limit in a few days, you can’t top up your account till a month has passed.
The Implementation Process
Joining a self–exclusion program is easy and thoroughly free. Since almost all casinos nowadays provide the respective tools, players can access them themselves. If you feel you are about to lose control over your spending at an online casino, follow these steps to prevent it:
- Find the Responsible Gambling section on the casino site or app (usually at the bottom of the homepage).
- Choose the self-exclusion method from the suggested ones. Depending on the casino, you may be suggested to take a time out, set deposit limits, keep track of your activity, set up notifications to manage your time or suspend your account.
- Follow the instructions to confirm the self-exclusion terms.
Contact customer support for guidance if you can’t find any Responsible Gambling section on the casino site you are playing at. Provide your terms and conditions, and the operator will instantly block you from the platform for a specified period of time.
Technological Innovations in Self-Exclusion
Despite active operations of self-exclusion systems within the scope of Responsible Gambling, problem gaming cases don’t seem to decrease. Excessive gambling is one of today’s growing concerns worldwide, and implementing modern technologies into the matter has become imperative.
For instance, AI-powered algorithms effectively analyse data and patterns to identify early signs of a gambling addiction. Machine learning recognises behavioural patterns and flags the operator about a particular player’s risk of developing an addiction. And finally, implementing biometric verification in the casino industry greatly fosters security measures. A gambling site can monitor who registers and uses their services by using facial recognition, fingerprints, or even IRIS scans. This way, they can prevent underage gambling.
Integrating Self-Exclusion with Mobile App
Casino apps have taken the iGaming world by storm, and more and more players prefer gambling on the go. Luckily, along with the development of casino apps, self-regulation and exclusion apps have emerged, too. The most popular ones are GamBan, Quit Pokies, and GamBlock. You can download any and enable them to block access to gambling-related content on the device for the duration of your subscription.
The Role of Blockchain in Self-Exclusion
Blockchain is a transparent and decentralised system that helps players make anonymous instant casino payments and promotes responsible gambling. It lets users set predefined limits on their wagering activities through smart contracts. This way, they can avoid the pitfalls of excessive gaming.
Also, the blockchain allows the creation of a unified self-exclusion database. This will enable individuals to simultaneously restrict their access to multiple online casinos (similar to GamStop, yet more global).
Virtual gambling operators are under growing scrutiny from regulatory bodies to deliver secure and positive gaming experiences to their customers. Although self-exclusion systems work well in promoting responsible gambling, the need to integrate modern technologies appears palpable. They can revolutionise the virtual gaming industry, creating a safe gambling environment for punters worldwide.