GamStop is the premier self-exclusion scheme designed for online casino operators and players in the UK. All casinos licensed in the UK are obliged to participate in GamStop, which is a voluntary scheme for punters looking to self-exclude from online gambling activity.
The scheme was introduced by the UKGC (UK Gambling Commission), the body that oversees gambling in the UK, including licensing online casino operators. Essentially, all UKGC-licensed online gambling websites and operators must participate in GamStop. Here’s a quick overview of how it works:
Collect User Data
GamStop is a database that allows UK punters to voluntarily register and block access to all UK licensed online casinos. Once players are registered on GamStop, players won’t be able to log into their casino accounts. To achieve this, the UKGC requires all UK casinos to participate in the program. During GamStop registration, the player will provide various details, including name, email addresses, physical addresses and phone numbers, past and current.
On the other hand, UK casinos are expected to deploy robust KYC processes and ID verification when players register for a gambling account. Most casinos will require a valid name and email address. Some also require ID verification before payouts are given. Information collection is vital for GamStop to work. When a player signs up or tries to log into a UK licensed casino, the site will automatically run the information against the GamStop database. If you are a GamStop player, the casino will immediately block you from accessing real money games and bets.
GamStop self-exclusion terms vary, with the least time being six months. Players on the scheme must wait out the self-exclusion term before they regain access to UK casinos. GamStop also updates its database and retains user data for the period you are registered. All operators licensed by the UKGC participate in GamStop and risk losing their license if they fail to do so. However, the scheme is only for online UK casinos. Land-based casinos and independent offshore websites licensed outside the UK don’t have to join GamStop.
How iGaming Operators See The Data
The UKGC is tasked with licensing and regulating online casinos and gambling sites in the UK. To fulfil this obligation, the agency has various restrictions and requirements for casino operators and players. UK iGaming operators must participate in GamStop, which involves syncing the casino with the GamStop database to fish out players blocked from gambling. All UKGC casinos have access to the GamStop database and can quickly run player accounts against it to determine if they are registered. This requires collecting sufficient data about the player, including name, email address, phone number and other details.
UK iGaming operators don’t have to check the GamStop library manually. Thanks to database management technologies, the system automatically searches the database when players log in or sign up for a new account. If a match is found, the casino automatically blocks access to the resource. Otherwise, the player is allowed to continue playing. GamStop registration takes 24 hours to become active. However, after that, players will be blocked from UK casinos until the self-exclusion term expires. Players can extend the self-exclusion period once it expires or regain access to UK casinos.
Is GamStop a Bulletproof System?
GamStop is not a bulletproof system. The scheme is voluntary and only applicable to casinos licensed by the UKGC. There’s no law against joining online casino not on GamStop from this list which means UK punters can play anywhere they want. With so many reputable independent casinos and offshore sites welcoming GamStop players, the self-exclusion scheme does little to help players determined to continue gambling. Here are some of the features that attract players to:
- Similar Offer
The same casino products are offered in the UK and offshore, so players can easily access online slots, blackjacks, roulettes, baccarat, dice, poker, bingo, poker, keno, lotto, craps, scratchcards and more. If anything, non-GamStop casinos offer a wider range of games and possibilities.
- Fewer Restrictions
The great thing about non-GamStop casino sites is you get to play with fewer restrictions and more privacy. The casinos don’t require ID verification, don’t provide new policies , and allow players to use cryptocurrency, eWallets and other convenient payment methods.
- Lucrative Bonuses
New non GamStop sites keep emerging and offer huge welcome bonuses, cashback bonuses and loyalty rewards. On the other hand, it takes longer for the UKGC to license new sites.
Casino sites not on GamStop have many other advantages but also come with drawbacks. It is still important to find reputable sites with a valid gambling license, certified fair games and a growing reputation among players.
GamStop offers a database with user data UKGC casinos can use to check if players are registered on the self-exclusion program. The goal is to block punters who have voluntarily signed up to block access to all UK licensed casinos. However, GamStop players still have options in land-based casinos and offshore websites. To self-exclude from all gambling, players should also consider joining SENSE (for land-based UK casinos) and downloading apps like Gamban and Gamblock, which block access to all online casinos and gambling content.
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