The Gambling Commission has announced a slew of new rules for online slot players, including speed limits and a permanent prohibition on features that speed up play or celebrate losses as wins.
Following public and player consultation, operators must enact stringent new player protection measures that reduce the intensity of online casino games, make them safer by design, and give players more control over their gambling. Source
The Commission has concentrated its efforts on online slots due to their features that increase play intensity and player risk. The average loss per player in online slot games is by far the highest.
The new rules look at four key elements of online slots games
- features that increase play speed or give the appearance of the control
- faster than a 2.5-second slot machine spin
- Players who use auto-play may lose track of their game.
- When the return is equal to or less than the stake, the sounds or images suggest a win.
Aside from that, operators must now clearly display the player’s total losses or wins, as well as the amount of time spent playing. Along with the changes to online slots, the Commission has permanently prohibited reverse withdrawals for all online gambling.
By October 31, 2021, online operators must have fully implemented the new security measures.
More research has shown that using auto-play causes some players to lose track of play, making it difficult to stop playing and, in some cases, gambling on other activities concurrently since the Commission’s consultation was published in July 2020.
Using reverse withdrawal functions, players are shown to be at risk of succumbing to the temptation to keep gambling. Furthermore, the removal or restriction of slot features has been linked to increased play intensity, loss of player control, or binge play.
As part of the Commission’s comprehensive gambling reform program, the Commission has strengthened online age and ID verification safeguards, improved customer interaction practices, and prohibited credit card gambling.
On September 30th, the Commission announced the implementation of new rules to combat irresponsible ‘VIP customer’ practices. These rules will go into effect on October 31st. The results of this year’s customer interaction consultation, which was launched in November.