GamStop: Sight from the Inside

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The excitement of gambling and the lucrative experiences it offers is taking over a toll on billions of people across the world. This enthusiasm is quite well certified by the UK, which spends an average of 135.20 Euros per year. Online gambling contributes to the greater percentage to it, owing to its availability of resources at hand, and a safe, peaceful playing environment without public hassle. 

But, what the government finds alarming is the lack of productivity among their workers, who are controlled by problem gambling, and gambling addiction to a great extent. More than 15% of the gamblers are found gambling at their workplace daily. Further, the far-reaching consequences of problem gambling display a high rate of people suffering from anxiety, poor mental health, financial instability, etc. These led the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) to establish a self-exclusion scheme, GamStop in 2016 operated by National Online Self Exclusion Scheme Limited or NOSES, which partners with all the UKGC-licensed casinos. 

GamStop is a popular self-exclusion software, which works only within the UK. It comes free of cost and is a great scheme to exclude or restrain oneself from gambling for a specific period. The functionality of GamStop includes the general registration procedure, which is followed by checking the registered user in the casinos. GamStop also provides a filtering scheme for market lists.  

Registration Process

All players in the UK have the choice to voluntarily exclude themselves from gambling for a specific period. The first step to do so is by registering themselves to the website of GamStop. The registration process involves inputting all the correct information of personal details. This includes the user’s full name, date of birth, registered mobile number and email address with banks, and residential address. But be aware, according to the Nonstopcasino.org study, UK players will still be able to register and gamble at casinos not on GamStop. After filling in these details, the user is directed to choose the duration of self-exclusion. The available period extends to six months, one year, or five years. 

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A reliable third-party system, offered by the Trans Union provider, asks additional questions, to verify the user. They also keep a check to ensure that one user cannot sign up for others, and the registered user holds all the secure and authentic documentation. 

For getting the updated status as a registered self-exclusion user, the user has to wait for almost a day. Since GamStop ceases control over gambling mobile apps, the effective functionality of the device might get altered at times. 

Checking as a Registered User in UKGC-Licensed Casinos

This procedure enables the user to access the functionality of GamStop. As the user inputs registered data for playing at the casinos, the operators undergo an immediate check and bar the user. Banks will further receive a notification, seeking permission to decline all credit/debit card/net banking attached to the registered phone number for putting into the website. 

Only after the registered period is over, the user can freely access the UKGC-registered casinos.

Additional Features to Filter Market Lists

This self-exclusion feature of GamStop involves the operators filtering out necessary data while discarding unnecessary ones. To access this feature, firstly the GamStop API collects data to make a general marketing list. The marketing list undergoes a run-through in the self-exclusion software, only after which it is uploaded. Whenever a user requests a definite list, GamStop runs a verification process for providing access to the list. The list in general abstains from any info, data, or usage history related to the online casinos. After confirmation of the verification process, the operator receives a notification, granting access to the database. 

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This feature has a great advantage to keeping a check on gambling at workplaces. 

Possible Drawbacks

Since the UK is a hub of gambling, it provides access to several international casinos, which fails to come under the rules and restrictions of the UKGC. To avoid such possibilities, you should use other gambling blockers. Further, the schemes of gambling, provided by the online gaming platforms do not partner with the UKGC. Hence, even if a problem gambler is a registered user of the GamStop, they can easily play at other casinos enrolled under Malta Gaming Authority, Gambling Commission of Great Britain, Government of Gibraltar, Costa Rica gaming license, etc. This fails the entire purpose of the self-exclusion software.

Concluding Thoughts

GamStop has shown a positive impact on the issues of problem gambling. Nevertheless, it is the user on whose goal the entire purpose of the operator would be fulfilled. 

It is very difficult to overcome gambling addiction, hence there are considerable cases in which the user resorts to other means to break from the rules. This led to the popularity of some international casinos in the UK. Several NGOs too are working together to provide the required help to the problem gamblers.

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