Due to the impact Covid-19 is having on operations across the UK we have had to reduce our phoneline opening hours.

Our phonelines are open on Monday, Wednesday and Friday between 10 am and 4 pm.

The contact us service is also available for answers to common questions and we will aim to respond to these enquiries as quickly as possible.

If you have a question about your gambling, or the gambling of someone close to you, our FAQs from gambling consumers during lockdown may provide valuable information. Our what we do page also provides an overview of the types of queries we are able to help consumers with in the first instance.

The National Gambling Helpline is also available 24 hours a day, seven days a week through GamCare. It is there to support those suffering from gambling problems or those concerned about the affect gambling is having on people close to them. You can call them free on 0808 8020 133, or visit gamcare.org.uk.

If you are a gambling operator please read our Frequently Asked Questions for gambling businesses.
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Digital and virtual currencies

Digital currencies are established forms of crypto-logically secured currencies that are traded, and recognised by institutions like the Financial Conduct Authority and HMRC. Bitcoin is the most well-known.

Virtual currencies are unregulated and generally issued and controlled by developers, and used and accepted among the members of a specific virtual community, for instance within a video game or social casino. Where they can be exchanged for cash or traded for items of value they are considered money or money’s worth.

Virtual currencies

In our view, the ability to convert any in-game items into cash, or to trade them (for other items of value) means they attain a real world value and become articles of money or money’s worth. Where facilities for gambling are offered using such items a licence is required in exactly the same manner as would be expected in circumstances where somebody uses or receives casino chips as a method of payment for gambling which can later be exchanged for cash.

Digital currencies: points to consider

  • The degree of anonymity associated with digital currencies may be attractive to individuals who want to conceal their identity and/or the source of their funds
  • There is no central authority that supports the value of digital currency – for example, Bitcoin has a history of large price fluctuations
  • There is a history of hacking, theft and other criminal activity associated with digital currencies.

Your responsibilities

If you want to accept digital currency as a means of payment (either directly or through a payment processor which accepts digital currencies) you must satisfy yourself and us that you can meet your obligations in relation to anti-money laundering and that you are acting in a socially responsible way.

Also see

Virtual currencies, eSports and social casino gaming

Position paper

855 KB Download

Virtual currencies, eSports and social gaming

Discussion paper

137 KB Download