Government reforms gambling laws for digital age.

The Government has set out plans to update the Gambling Act to combat problem gambling in the smartphone era.

The plans include a levy on betting firms to fund addiction services, stake limits for online slots and checks on new players.

This follows recent high-profile cases including one individual who was allowed to lose £70,000 in ten hours and another who exceeded their credit limit by £30,000 to place a £100,000 bet.

Last month William Hill was fined over £19m for allowing a customer to spend £23,000 in just 20 minutes.

While millions of people enjoy gambling every year technology has transformed the industry. Smartphone users can bet 24 hours a day and effectively have a mobile virtual casino in their pockets.

Commenting on this Andrew Jones MP said: “Most people who gamble do so without an issue and know when to stop. We do however need to update the law to reflect the changes that have happened in the industry since the Gambling Act was passed in 2005.

“The impact problem gambling can have on individuals, their families and friends can be profound and it is important that betting firms take all reasonable steps to prevent players from gambling beyond their means.

“I am also pleased to see that a new industry ombudsman will be created to rule independently on disputes between players and operators.”

You can view the white paper in full here.