OhMyBingo is committed to ensuring that we operate responsibly, promoting safe and responsible gambling.
We ensure that our practices uphold and abide by responsible gambling advice and guidelines, and we aim to educate and support players towards safer gambling.
Everyone has seen adverts reminding them to play responsibly, but what does that mean, and how can players keep themselves safe when gambling online?
Develop good habits from the start
Start as you mean to go on! When you play bingo, slots, or casino games online, getting into healthy habits can make things so much easier over time.
Practising restraint and installing good boundaries for yourself means you are less likely to slip later. A good place to start might include:
Only playing when you feel positive and in control, not emotional or upset
Play at designated times, so gambling doesn’t creep into other aspects of live
Set up spend limits and reality checks on your preferred site
How to stay in control
There are things you can do to help yourself stay responsible when gambling:
Develop a budget to set aside for gambling – you must be comfortable with losing all of this if luck doesn’t go your way.
Stick to your budget – no ifs, no buts.
Use tools to keep you grounded – like reality checks and deposit limits.
Check your spend and transactions regularly – almost all sites will allow you to see these.
Decide when you’ll withdraw, and stick to it – avoid the temptation to have ‘just one more’.
Know the signs of addiction and where you can seek help – keep resources in mind.
Recognising the warning signs
Gambling to try to win back losses
Gambling at inappropriate times (i.e. at work, during family time)
Gradually increasing bets to keep it ‘fun’
Gambling money meant for expenses like bills
Borrowing to gamble (including credit cards)
Lying about or hiding your gambling
You find it difficult or impossible to cheer up or feel happy without gambling
Gambling makes you feel unhappy, depressed, stressed, or desperate
Gambling takes priority over other aspects of life like hobbies, friends, or family
If you recognise any of these behaviours, in yourself or in someone else, this may be an indication of a gambling problem.
Take a Break and Self-exclusion
These are tools provided by online gambling sites to help you stay safe and happy while you play, and to protect players who are struggling.
Take a Break
Blocks you from that site only
Can be very short term, like 24 hours
Good for stopping yourself reversing withdrawals
Deactivates your account
You may still receive marketing communications
This can be reversed
Blocks you from that site and cannot be lifted under any circumstances until it ends
Can be shorter term, or up to permanent forever
Now becoming more advanced, and can be done across multiple sites
GAMSTOP is a scheme which implements self-exclusion across all sites which are registered to it. More and more UK bingo sites are joining, which means self-exclusion is getting better and safer.
Protecting vulnerable players
Online gambling is illegal amongst minors (under 18 in the UK), and all gambling operators have strict rules to follow to ensure that they are doing enough to protect and exclude under-18s. Online bingo, slots, and casino sites must be careful to properly age-verify anyone who signs up with them.
Gambling providers must also meet standards to show they are checking for potential gambling addictions amongst their players. This might include pop-ups that check you are happy with your level of play.
In order to protect players from overspending, and to avoid fraud and money laundering, gambling sites are now required by law to monitor their customers’ spend. UK providers will now require documentation to check that players are spending safely, and not more than they can afford. This is often in the form of a Source of Funds check.
You can read more about Source of Funds checks and what gambling providers are doing to protect players in our article, When Sites Ask You for Documentation.
What sites do to help
Provide tools like reality check and spend limits for players to use
Market responsibly, honestly, and not to under-18s
Commit to charities and support organisations that help fight gambling addiction
Direct players to any and all available self-help resources
For more information about gambling addiction, including recognising and seeking help for it, please see our article, “What is Problem Gambling, and What Can Be Done About It?”.