Prevention of underage gambling
The prevention of underage gaming is one of the most important aspects of responsible gambling and it needs to be emphasized that individuals that have not reached the legal age (18 or 21) must not be allowed to gamble for real-money.
Online operators in turn must take all the necessary steps to make sure that underage gambling activities do not take place on their websites and that the laws protecting minors in their targeted jurisdictions are respected.
Operators must present a clear registration processes for all players and mandatory verification steps to be followed to ensure the age of gamblers.
At the same time, parents are advised to monitor and take all the necessary means to block their access by installing parental control apps and/or programs on their devices.
You must have policies to prevent underage gambling and you must monitor their effectiveness.
To protect children these should include, for example:
- checking the age of customers who appear to be, or are suspected of being, underage
- not deliberately providing facilities for gambling in such a way as to appeal particularly to children and young people, for example by reflecting or being associated with youth culture
- in premises restricted to adults, refusing service in circumstances where an adult is accompanied by a baby, child or young person.
Test purchasing to prevent underage gambling
We support and work closely with your local licensing authority on a rolling programme of test purchasing activity to test the robustness of your age verification policies and procedures.
Gambling businesses that have failed in these test purchase exercises have had some or all of these premises conditions imposed upon them:
- Think 21 or Think 25 policy
- regular test purchasing to be undertaken, to ensure the licensee monitors the effectiveness of their controls
- use of magnetic locks to restrict access to premises
- use of an infra-red beam system to alert staff to the presence of customers in age-restricted areas
- barriers to reduce the risk of children crossing from family entertainment centre premises into adult gaming centre premises
- re-positioning category D gaming machines away from entrances to adult gaming centre premises, to reduce the attraction of children to those areas
- induction and refresher training for staff.