SCV Letter to Your MP

Dear

I am writing to express concerns regarding proposals for a Single Customer View to monitor the customer activity of those who use internet betting platforms and the comments recently made by the Minister responsible Chris Philp.  

My principal concern regarding single customer view is who will be making the decisions as to what constitutes a problem gambler. As you may be aware there are thousands of ordinary punters who have their accounts restricted or closed by betting companies if their algorithm’s identity them as a punter who represents a risk to their profitability. Once identified, they are restricted to maximum stakes of a few pounds. They do this by tracking consumer behaviours, deposits, and betting patterns. Consistent losers experience the opposite treatment, free bets and hospitality packages. Worse still, self-excluded customers receive courtesy calls at the end of their self-exclusion period to invite them back. 

I understand the Gambling Commission CEO Andrew Rhodes has stated ‘at no point will operators have access to data which would allow them to assess profitability of a customer or to inform decisions around account restrictions from a commercial perspective.’ Many are asking how can this promise be enforced given operators are already abusing software to restrict customers as I have described, and are there plans for an independent regulator to govern SCV, if so how can the Government guarantee that the both have the knowledge to the sector to make judgements and that they will not be influenced by operators.  

In my view the Minister seems not to be listening to the ordinary punters, only corporate interests, and anti-gambling campaign groups.  

I would therefore ask that you request the Minister engage with groups representing ordinary punters such as the Horseracing Betting Forum, and explain how the Government expect SCV to work, and who would regulate its use to ensure the profitable punters are not registered as problem gamblers by the betting industry. I would also ask if the Government has calculated the cost to the levy and racing industry which would be caused by SCV.

I look forward to your response.

Yours Sincerely

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