In Canada, it is perfectly legal to enjoy online gambling. Casinos.co estimate that over 70% of Canadians partake in gambling activities. When done moderately, online gaming is fun and safe. However, like with everything there are risks. In order to keep players safe many online casinos practice what’s called responsible gaming.
Read on to find out about responsible gaming and what help is out there for players.
What is Responsible Gaming?
Responsible gaming is concerned with the initiatives that gaming companies must take to ensure their players are protected against the dangers of problem gambling.
All licensed and reputable operators are legally required to implement measures that promote responsible gambling. These include limits on deposits, bets and session times, as well as the option for players to self-exclude and freeze their casino account for a period of time. It also extends to the protection of minors and underage persons from being exposed to gambling activity.
Problem gambling is a very real phenomenon which affects millions of people the world over. If you believe you or your loved one is suffering from a gambling problem, there are warning signs which will help you confirm this and organizations where you can seek the help and support.
What is Underage Gambling?
Underage gambling refers to minors and persons under the legal age of 18 engaging in some form of gambling activity, whether online or in person.
Part of an operator’s responsible gaming initiatives is to take preventative measures to ensure that minors and underage persons are not exposed to gambling activity or tempted to seek it out. Underage gambling is illegal and both operators and legal guardians may be held liable for it.
In the case of online operators, they usually implement measures to verify and identify players so as to be sure they are of legal age. Marketing departments will also avoid using marketing content that could be found appealing to minors.
As a parent, it is also your responsibility to ensure minors are protected from the dangers of underage gambling. Guardians must it take care in giving minors easy access to gambling sites as well as credit card or bank details.
What Help Can Online Casinos Provide to Players?
Online casinos are responsible to take measures to protect players from falling victim to gambling problems. They do this by implementing various tools across their site which can help you keep your gambling in check. These include setting limits on your deposits, wagering amounts as well as the amount of time you spend on the site. Cooling-off periods are a good way to take a break from gambling as players will be blocked from accessing the site during this time. There’s also the option to self-exclude by temporarily or permanently shut down your casino account. This can be re-opened after the self-exclusion period if the player wishes. Customer support at the will be able to help if players have any concerns.
There are also other measures you can take as a player to protect yourself such as unfollowing casino’s social media pages. Players can also install gambling blocking software (Gamblock, PlayScan) on pcs or mobiles.
List of Canadian Organizations
The following organizations offer help and support for those experiencing some form of gambling problem.
Canada Safety Council
What they do: Provide more detailed information on gambling addiction, how to avoid it as well as a list of trusted helplines you can contact for help and support.
What they do: List the warning signs to recognize gambling addiction as well as the various methods used to treat it. They also provide free screenings and assessments by qualified addiction counselors.
What they do: Offer interactive web tools to help you monitor and control your gambling urges as well as self-assessment tools and a community forum to share your experiences with others affected by gambling problems
Absolutely. Most reputable online casinos provide the option to cap the amount of cash you deposit into your account as well as setting other limits too, such as how much you wager and the length of your gaming session.
This is a great way to help you set a budget and maintain better control over the amount you spend on online gaming.
Of course. Gambling should only be considered a source of entertainment and never be stressful or affect your personal or professional life.
If this begins to happen, then it may be a warning sign that you need to take a break from gambling. You can do this by setting a cooling-off period, which will freeze your account for anywhere from 1 to 30 days, during which time you will not receive any promotions either. Another option is self-exclusion which allows players to shut down their account for longer periods of time, generally 6 months to a year or even permanently.
Online casinos are legally required to keep their players’ information for up to 5 years after the closure of their account. This include personal and banking information as well as any KYC and identity documents submitted.
These regulations set by industry watchdogs and financial institutions to prevent fraud and money laundering through online casino channels.
When choosing to take a break from gambling, your account will be frozen and remain dormant for the duration of the cooling-off or self exclusion period.
During this time, you will be blocked from accessing the site as well as receiving any marketing content related to bonuses or promotions.
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