3 Huge Problems With The Rapid Growth Of UK Online Gambling - The Solihull Observer

3 Huge Problems With The Rapid Growth Of UK Online Gambling

Solihull Editorial 13th Dec, 2023   0

The exceptional rise of online gambling in the UK is well-documented, especially in an age when society itself is rapidly moving towards instant access and a pace to match it. Naturally, casino sites followed, and including sports betting into the mix has totally distorted an otherwise familiar market. Plus, considering how easy it is these days to start a new business, it’s not surprising to see a huge growth in this industry, as well.

Why Has Online Gambling Grown So Much?

So why the sudden growth spurt? Well, Brits have taken to online gambling for all kinds of reasons.

For starters, the UK has fairly open gambling laws, even for remote gambling. It’s legal and regulated, which gives Brits an easy and safe way to participate. Likewise, internet access itself has become widespread throughout the UK, which creates huge potential for online businesses, including casino sites.

But that’s only the beginning of the story:

Gambling Became More Popular

In 2023, the UK Gambling Commission made several regulatory changes to ensure fair play and enhance player protections. Despite the initial concerns, the industry didn’t struggle after adapting these features.

Gambling was already popular in the UK, as evidenced by the swath of land-based casinos throughout the nation, but with the increase of internet access and liberation in gambling laws, online options have skyrocketed, too. In fact, remote gambling is now worth £5.7 billion, or 40% of the market share, which is a significant jump in the last few years.

Cheaper & Easier To Visit

Rather than get dressed for a night out, spend money travelling, and then spend even more money eating and drinking, gambling is now as simple as opening a website and logging in. Plus, all those land-based casinos closed during the pandemic.

Moreover, land-based casinos are a great time, and the games are always fun, but there are only so many machines and tables that can fit in a finite amount of space. But that’s not a problem online sites have; for example, GoldenBet Casino has more than 3,000 playable games and adds new ones all the time.

Finally, leading operators have initiated major marketing campaigns that have also drawn in many new players.

But the rapid growth of online gambling, while providing plenty of entertainment and the potential to win money, has also created new risks and worsens some existing problems, too.

Problem #1: Increase In Addictive Gambling

As online gambling becomes easier to access, so too has there been a rise in addictive behaviour. That was especially true during the pandemic, particularly among those who already regularly gambled before the lockdowns. Moreover, some demographics, like young adults, are vulnerable to such harms.

Problem gambling can have health and lifestyle consequences; it’s not unheard of for those with addictive behaviours to face life disruptions through broken relationships and marriages, bankruptcy, homelessness, and even crime. Likewise, a strong link between gambling and heavy drinking exists, both of which are addictive and can worsen the other.

Problem #2: Data Accessibility

Even if you’re not prone to addictive behaviours, gambling online requires submitting quite a bit of personal information about yourself, not to mention sensitive financial details and long-term data about your gambling habits. Collecting all of this information in one place introduces two main risks:

  • Data harvesting – Casino sites collect information to prevent fraud, but then all of that information remains stored and could be harvested by unauthorised users. Worse yet, the average Brit has about three online casino accounts, which means that information is spread that much farther.
  • Data sharing – Currently, data protection law doesn’t stop online casinos from conducting financial risk checks on its players, and lenders are permitted to share personal information in this pursuit. Whilst it must be done transparently, that doesn’t change the fact that sensitive information passes another set of hands.

Problem #3: Regulatory Changes

In response to the sudden burst of new casino sites, the UK has made a number of regulatory changes in the hopes to protect vulnerable players. However, many have criticised these amendments as an overzealous response that creates more problems for otherwise unaffected Brits:

  • Ban on features – UK-licensed casinos are required to limit slot spin speeds and are banned from celebrating losses as wins in any way. Any features designed to create an illusion of control or the illusion of a win are included. But it means you can’t fast forward through the tedious parts anymore.
  • Display of session stats – An operator must display the total wins and losses earned during the current session, which can create a negative mindset if the numbers are lopsided in the wrong direction.
  • Player protection checks – Protection checks have been included when Brits register for an account at a UK-licensed casino in an effort to protect the most at-risk before unaffordable losses occur. For everyone else, that means a longer wait before they can play games.


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