New research to help operators identify at-risk gamblers
A new report compiled using data held by online gambling operators has identified indicators of harm that can be used to swiftly intervene to protect problem gamblers and those at risk of developing problems.
The research, commissioned by the charity GambleAware and carried out by PwC, found that problem gamblers were more likely to bet between midnight and 4am and to gamble throughout the week, as well as betting an average of £98 and between five and 90 times a day.
Non-problem gamblers, GambleAware said, typically bet between two and seven times and just £14 a day.
Young, unmarried men who are not employed but are currently looking for work was one demographic identified as being at risk.
More than 10,000 customers of bet365, Ladbrokes, Sky Bet and William Hill gave permission for their data to be used in the study.
GambleAware chief executive Marc Etches said: "Almost everyone has a smartphone in their pocket these days, so we have access to gambling websites anytime, anywhere.
"We’re pleased to see the remote gambling industry working together to explore effective ways to help identify problem gamblers and people at risk."
The study is the second phase of a three-part project and Etches said the next stage would focus on intervention methods.
The report added that possible measures could include freezing accounts and messaging customers directly.
Remote Gambling Association chief executive Clive Hawkswood said the research demonstrated the industry can now spot those most at risk.
He added: "However, identifying risky play is pointless if we cannot remedy it and so we’re keen to continue with the third stage of the project as soon as possible to evaluate the most effective forms of interaction with customers once their gambling has been assessed as potentially causing harm."
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