More Hungarian Problem Gamblers Opt to Ban Themselves from Gambling Since Implementation of Self-Exclusion Option

An increasing number of Hungarian people are taking advantage of the opportunity to suspend themselves from gambling, according to the local news hub Magyar Hírlap. As reported by the media, 150 people have filed requests in the Gaming Supervisory Authority (GSA) in the first six months of 2019, asking to be banned from gambling for five years.

Since January 1st, 2016, Hungarian people who are struggling to restrain themselves from gambling have been able to take active measures. A change in the country’s legislation has provided them with the chance to file self-restraint statements at the Gambling Supervisory Authority to ban themselves from gambling for a certain period of time.

If a problem gambler makes such a decision, they can suspend themselves from one or more types of gambling or from particular gambling providers for one, three or five years. Such a self-exclusion application can be filed for different gambling categories of gambling services, such as arcades, casinos, card games, online casinos and remote gambling services, or all of the categories at the same time.

The latest data provided by the authority which is engaged in supervision and control of gambling services and activities on the territory of Hungary, the GSA, shows that more and more people have been taking advantage of the chance to ban themselves from gambling every year since the introduction of the self-exclusion measure.

Most Gambling Addicts Choose Self-Exclusion from All Types of Gambling Available in Hungary

According to data provided by the Gambling Supervisory Authority, a total of 76 people used the self-exclusion option in 2016, but since then, their number has been constantly rising. In the year following the implementation of the new self-restraint service for problem gamblers, 2017, the number of gambling addicts who wanted to suspend themselves from accessing their favorite pastime rose to 98. A total of 218 problem gamblers asked for a self-exclusion from gambling last year.

As revealed by the Gambling Supervisory Authority, 150 people applied for self-exclusion from gambling in the first six months of 2019, in comparison to 107 who applied for the option in the same period a year ago.

Statistics have shown that the number of problem gamblers in Hungary has tripled since 2015. This means that around 2.5 million local residents are currently affected by compulsive gambling. Out of them, about 300,000 people can be categorized as gambling addicts, and 800,000 have been affected by a mild form of problem gambling and are considered at risk.

According to data provided by the GSA, the majority of Hungarian problem gamblers who apply for self-exclusion choose the longest ban of five years. Such players also usually choose to suspend themselves from accessing all types of gambling activities. There is also a significant number of problem gamblers who prefer to ban themselves from the services of a particular gambling operator.

The number of people who opt for short-term self-exclusion is rising, as well.

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