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UK consumers banned from using credit cards to gamble

Gamblers in the UK will no longer be able to use their credit cards to place bets online after a major shake-up of rules announced by the industry regulator.

From 14 April, people wanting to place bets online will have to do so by using either a debit card or through cash deposited into an account.

The credit card ban affects all gambling, with the exception of the National Lottery, the Gambling Commission said.

It follows concerted efforts by the UK government to address the issue of problem gambling.

Neil McArthur, Gambling Commission chief executive, said: “Credit card gambling can lead to significant financial harm.

“The ban that we have announced today should minimise the risks of harm to consumers from gambling with money they do not have.”

Research by the commission classed 22% of online gamblers who use credit cards as “problem gamblers”.

There are an estimated 24 million adult gamblers in the UK.

Brigid Simmonds, chairwoman of the Betting and Gaming Council which represents the industry, said: “The Betting and Gaming Council is a body firmly committed to raising standards, safer gambling and change.

“We will implement a ban on credit cards and indeed our members will go further to study and improve the early identification of those at risk.

“The use of credit cards were previously used as a potential marker of harm which might lead to further intervention with customers.”

Additional reporting Reuters

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