GC warns operators over in-game ‘feature buy-ins’

17 January 2020

The GB Gambling Commission has warned operators to ensure their products meet transparency and online safety standards, after discovering that operators were offering games that featured a ‘buy-in’ option for bonus features.

This saw players able to pay money to access games’ bonus feature without playing the games’ normal rounds.

Six operators were found to be offering the feature, with one charging more than £3,000 for immediate access to the bonus round.

The regulator noted that its remote gambling and software technical standards require operators to provide an explanation of applicable rule stop customers, as well as prohibition them from active encouraging customers to chase their losses.

Licensees must also refrain from encouraging players to chase their losses, increase their stakes or amounts they have chosen to gamble with.

All six operators were contacted by the Commission over the use of the buy-in feature, and have since removed it from their sites.

The warning comes after a week in which the regulator has moved to strengthen player safeguards by banning the use of credit cards to fund gambling, and made access to the GamStop self-exclusion system a mandatory requirement for all licensees.