As of December 1, Bank Australia customers will no longer be allowed to fund their online casino accounts with funds from their credit cards.
The bank has confirmed that they will block any such attempted transactions after that date in a bid to prevent their clients from betting with funds that they specifically might not own.
Bank Australia debit card transactions will still be allowed, with the firm’s spokesperson commenting: “Our research shows the majority of our customers believe credit cards should not be used for gambling, and as a customer-owned bank, our customers’ opinions are a big part of our decision making.
“Under our Responsible Banking Policy, we don’t lend money to the gambling industry including casinos, online gambling operators or businesses that derive revenue directly from poker machines or sports betting.”
The firm also revealed that several other banks and financial institutions were considering introducing a credit card ban of their own following discussions with the Australian Banking Association.
The Association had launched their own consultation in December 2019, where they invited the thoughts of their customers on whether credit card use to fund online casino accounts should be limited or prohibited altogether.
That three-month long consultation also discussed better protection methods for players, and coincided with the first major bank – National Australia Bank – in the country offering its customers the chance to block sites, including those where gambling is available, via their mobile app.
That’s part of a wider trend across Australia, with retail customers of NAB Visa Credit and Visa Debit able to place self-imposed restrictions on any sites linked to online gambling.
Gambling Commission Calls on Financial Sector to Step Up
The chief executive of the UK Gambling Commission has called upon the financial sector to introduce new measures to help tackle problem gambling related harm.
Neil McArthur told an industry convention that banks and other institutions could do more to help identify problem gamblers and introduce measures that would place limits on their gaming.
“The financial sector has an important role to play,” he said when quizzed on the regulator’s plans to further tackle problem gambling. “We have already seen the introduction by banks of gambling blocking software, together with the use of data to support customers affected by problem gambling.”
That software has been introduced by big name firms such as HSBC, Barclays and Lloyds Banks as a method of giving individuals the choice to block certain sites and prevent payments being authorised.
And McArthur wants them to go further by creating a ‘single customer view’, which would enable the behaviour of an individual to be monitored across all casino operators at once – helping fewer players exhibiting troubling behaviour to slip through the net.
The chief executive used his platform as a chance to unveil the Gambling Commission’s latest tactics to ensure responsible gambling. These include a revamped set of rules regarding VIP schemes, with a nominated and licensed individual now responsible for conducting checks and monitoring the actions of all high rollers.
Enhanced affordability checks, new customer interaction initiatives and a raft of changes to slot game design standards will be introduced, with the possibility that ‘auto spin’ features will be disabled and the banning of displaying ‘win’ graphics when the payout is less than what the player has staked.