Survation finds regular gamblers betting more during lockdown

Coronavirus hasn't hurt online gambling. Clean Up Gambling's Survation polling, reported in the Guardian, found that 64 per cent of regular gamblers - those who usually bet at least once a week - are gambling at least as much, if not even more, than before the cancellation of racing and sports fixtures prior to the lockdown.

This suggests the more engaged racing and sports bettors are switching to digital slot, casino and virtual racing content, which have a higher proportion of harm associated with them.

Survation also found that more than a third of those who usually bet once a week or more think they are gambling too much, or believe themselves to be developing an addiction during the lockdown.

The polling indicated 41 per cent of regular online gamblers have signed up for new accounts with different sites.

It is regular gamblers who contribute the vast majority of online gambling revenue. This demographic are the most likely to be experiencing harm, or to be at-risk of developing an addiction.

With the loss of racing and sports fixtures, gambling operators are instead peddling slot and casino content to their customer base. This content is highly addictive, and due to our outdated gambling laws there are no limits on the amount a gambler can bet on a spin.

The government must review our gambling laws as soon as possible. Regulation must be brought up to date so consumers are protected. That means limits on stake, speed and affordability controls on the amount gamblers can deposit.