UKGC Explains ID Verification

Earlier this week, the UK Gambling Commission (UKGC) took to Twitter to offer guidance to players who are confused as to why they are being asked for ID as a condition of cashing out their winnings.

The UKGC is quick to point out that gambling operators should not be demanding identification documents from players at the point that they wish to withdraw their funds if the operator could have requested the information sooner.

The Commission’s tweet directs readers to an article titled “Why ID verification is important”, and it aims to explain how the ID verification process works, why it exists, and what the UKGC experts from its operators when carrying out players verification checks.

The article starts by listing 3 key reasons why operators need to check who you are when you open an account with one of their brands.

  • Firstly, they need to be sure that you’re old enough to gamble. This must be done to comply with UK laws which state that it’s illegal to gamble if you’re under the age of 18 (with the exception of lottery tickets).
  • Secondly, the operator must check if you’ve asked to be self-excluded from online gambling activities.
  • Thirdly, it must confirm your identity.

While it’s often possible for gambling operators to carry out verification checks themselves by using third-party databases, there may be times when there isn’t sufficient information available and hence, they must ask players to prove who they are.

Suitable forms of ID usually include passports, UK driving licenses, and recent utility bills which can be scanned and submitted via email or uploaded to the bingo or casino site directly.

Gambling operators are also required to check that players are not using criminal proceeds to fund their play. This may result in players being asked to provide additional information which proves their source of funds.

Some people have believed that requests made of them were just delaying tactics, but this is really not the case. The sites have no choice in the matter or they could lose their licences.

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