Self Exclusion from All Bookies

Self Exclusion from All Bookies

For many people, sports betting is a fun activity that brings some excitement from time to time, but for others it may be a gateway to a gambling problem. That’s why it’s very important to understand which responsible gambling tools are available and be prepared to use them when the situation calls for it. This article will present the best self-exclusion networks available in Britain at the moment and explain why their services are so essential.

What Is Self-Exclusion and Why Do You Need This?

It’s nearly impossible to police the online behaviour of adults, at least not without their consent and cooperation. Self-exclusion is thus the preferred approach to limiting gambling activities that depends on the player’s willingness to admit the problem and take steps to resolve it. With self-exclusion, a cool-off period is mandated during which the player is blocked from access to his favourite gambling playgrounds, eliminating the temptation to indulge in problematic activities. The player needs to accept the limitations to his freedom and understand why it’s necessary to introduce a barrier between him and the gambling sites.

There are several software applications designed to facilitate self-exclusion periods and guarantee that the ban will be respected. For example, GamStop is considered to be among the most effective and sophisticated programs for self-exclusion. Other tools include Gamban, BetBlocker, GamBlock, and so on. It’s generally recommended to use one of these tools to increase the chances for a successful intervention, but despite the best efforts, relapses are quite possible. Since no software is perfect, a wily player can always find a workaround that grants him the possibility to continue gambling. For this reason, it’s not wise to base your confidence just on the technical specifications of the app – it’s much better to include counselling and other forms of psychological support in the mix.


Citizens of the United Kingdom have access to probably the best responsible gambling tools in the world, thanks largely to the efforts of the national regulator – the UKGC. The tightly regulated environment gave rise to several private initiatives to restrict problematic gambling and GamStop is among the most effective ones, even despite the number of bookmakers not on GamStop. This program lets gamblers instantly block access to all online gambling platforms with UKGC-issued licences, essentially ending access to any games of chance for the player. Like with many similar tools, once the player enters the self-exclusion program and chooses its duration, it becomes impossible to terminate it sooner.

GamStop has demonstrably been at the forefront of the innovation in the responsible gambling space, and its track record speaks for itself. It is viewed as one of the most effective solutions for compulsive gambling, but it is far from a catch-all safety net. Its reach is limited to British-based bookies, which are not the only ones to serve UK players. Websites that are registered elsewhere (i.e. Malta or Curacao) are not included on the GamStop block list, and they are typically happy to give their business to currently self-excluded players. This leaves a coverage gap that needs to be addressed with other methods.


MOSES stands for Multi Operator Self Exclusion Scheme, and it is one of the self-exclusion networks available in Britain that hold the most promise. This is a telephone-based service that prevents the user from placing bets in any land-based betting shops in his geographic area. After calling the helpline and providing a recent photograph, the player can receive assistance to avoid gambling compulsively and racking up losses. MOSES distributes the picture to all gambling establishments the player is likely to visit and notifies them to withhold services to that person during the set period.

Since it’s focused on brick-and-mortar betting shops, MOSES represents a perfect complement for a web-based self-exclusion system like GamStop. Even though it is operated by a private company, this system is completely free of charge so there are virtually no downsides to using it. MOSES was launched in 2016 and has demonstrated great results so far, making it one of the most proven responsible gambling tools that UK punters can reach out to. Still, its focus on phone-based communication and land-based betting locations might be out of touch with the current trends in the market.


Can I self-exclude from online bookmakers only?

Yes, there are certain responsible gambling tools that prevent access to UK-based online casinos and bookmakers. GamStop is the most widely known application of this kind, but there are a few alternatives such as BetBlocker that might be worth exploring. Keep in mind that the MOSES system is not suitable for this purpose, as it only deals with land-based betting shops.

How long does self-exclusion usually last?

The most optimal duration for self-exclusion differs from one player to another. That said, it’s better to have a longer period than to risk falling back into old habits too soon. Responsible gambling tools such as GamStop allow each subscriber to decide on the appropriate length, with periods between 6 months and 5 years offered.

Is self-exclusion alone effective in curbing gambling addiction?

While self-exclusion can bring some immediate relief (especially financially) and lead to gradual recovery, it’s recommended to combine it with other forms of assistance. Serious cases of gambling addictions might require professional treatment, and could take many years to completely alleviate. On the other hand, casual gamblers who just need a break are well served with self-exclusion as the only method.

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