Gambling Commission warn of parasitic practices in video games

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The Gambling Commission has issued a report concerning the growing problem of virtual gambling in video games.

 

In a new report, the UK Gambling Commission has warned parents over the perils of gambling linked to video games.

The commission explains that an increase in popularity of third-party websites offering the opportunity to be virtual currency on video games poses a substantial risk to Britain’s children.

The lack of regulation on the sites, as opposed to land-based operations, has led to a rise of underhand practices within the field in recent times.

“Gambling on eSports with in-game items is growing and we need to make sure all gambling is fair, safe, crime-free and protects the young and vulnerable.”

Just last month the Commission carried out a first-of-itskind prosecution of two men running a gambling website relating to the popular FIFA computer games.

Gambling Commission CEO Sarah Harrison said: “Mums and dads could be giving money to a child thinking that they are playing a computer game when in fact they are gambling and this is real worry.

“Gambling on eSports with in-game items is growing and we need to make sure all gambling is fair, safe, crime-free and protects the young and vulnerable.”

The paper features a survey which indicates 8.5 percent of people have gambled on eSports and 90 percent of those that gambled had done so with in-game items (skins).

A primary concern of the Commission was that not everyone understands that players do not need to stake or risk anything before offering facilities for gaming will need to be licensed.

Harrison added: “These unlicensed websites are a hidden form of gambling – they’re parasites feeding off popular video games, presenting a clear and present danger to players including kids. Our prosecution last month demonstrates that we won’t hesitate to take action.”


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