Monzo Seeking Mandatory Gambling Blocks by All Banks
Monzo, the online bank based in the United Kingdom, has made a statement that around two million people in the UK experience gambling-related harm. The effects of this include falling into debt, losing a job, and arguing and separation from both friends and family. However, the financial institution believes that there is a way to curb this figure.
It thinks that gambling blocks are a powerful way of tackling the issue, providing problem gamblers with a method of being able to control themselves. Through this, a block would be placed on a player’s bank account or debit card, stopping them from being used to fund their gambling habits specifically.
While it is true that the UK banned the use of credit cards at gambling establishments and online betting sites back in April last year, problem gamblers have multiple other options open to them. Often, they will utilize gambling blocks when they want to reduce their gambling activity. It is this that can stop them from returning back to the gambling sites they frequently use. Those blocks can be removed, although there is usually a 24–48-hour cool-down period afterward.
According to studies done by the University of Bristol, around half of the people who utilized a gambling block spent less or no money on gambling since doing so.
The Monzo brand has launched its own gambling block for users to take advantage of, which became available in April 2018. This has helped many people to beat their gambling addiction, as it has seen Monzo block up to 585,000 gambling transactions every single month. Some other banks have a similar feature for their customers, including Halifax, Lloyds and RBS. That being said, 40% of UK current accounts do not provide such a feature.
Now, Monzo is calling on the government to do more so that everyone is able to block gambling transactions through their bank if they so wish. In a letter to the government, the bank asks for “a new requirement for account providers in the UK to make sure every consumer can access a friction driven, card-based gambling block – regardless of who they bank with.”