Well-known bookmaker, Geoff Banks has recently complained to the United Kingdom Gambling Commission (UKGC) that his gambling website has been receiving large numbers of punters thanks to an aggressive promotion run by a “matched betting” website. Banks, who has been a part of the bookmaking industry for almost two decades said that his site received huge numbers of falsified registrations from punters hoping to make a quick buck via ‘guaranteed’ wins.
What is Matched Betting?
Matched betting is a concept that permits punters to guarantee profits by balancing free wagers placed at inflated odds against ‘lay’ bets. It is also known as free betting. In fact, this is a system that makes use of the free bets that online bookmakers offer in order to attract new customers. As a matter of fact, there are websites that coach customers how to use this system to make money. For instance, customers get detailed information on how to give false information to open multiple accounts.
According to Banks, his website started to get hundreds of applications every day to open accounts whereas it used to get no more than twenty on a good day previously. Upon checking with Google Analytics it was found that all the applications were originating from the same website.
Banks’ website has launched a promotional offer in which customers would get free bets worth £30 when they deposited £10. However, it was discovered that people were opening many accounts with the same online bookie just to take advantage of these offers. These people were even using money transfer services such as Skrill, Ffrees, and pre-paid credit cards to open these accounts without having to go through a detailed verification process. The site which was directing these customers to Banks’ website charges them approximately £115 to give them all the necessary details about matched betting and how to do it correctly.
Banks is a vocal critic of what he calls online gambling’s ‘bonus culture’ but he is compelled to operate them in order to attract new customers. In fact, he is of the opinion that the Gambling Commission should ban the practice of offering bonus bets so that customers will not be able to take recourse to matched betting without risking their own money. He has informed the Gambling Commission about the website in question and has asked it to investigate whether it had broken the law or induced others to do so by falsifying their information.
Interestingly, the matching betting website at the centre of this controversy has quite a few unsatisfied customers. A visit to the site’s Facebook page indicates that many people have experienced problems with their accounts opened in the names of their friends and family. More than a few people complain that their friends have denied them access to their accounts and have made off with their money.
The UKGC, when contacted for a comment on this issue, said that individual complaints were not up for discussion. The matched betting website also chose not to answer any queries on the subject.
Enable Runs in King George if Gosden Approves
Fans of Enable will most likely get to see the top rated filly in action in Ascot’s George VI And Queen Elizabeth Stakes if her owner Khalid Abdullah gives the go ahead to Clarehaven handler John Gosden. This will be the first time that the filly gets to compete against older horses. She has had a very good show at the Irish Oaks at the Curragh. Hence, she is in good form for King George. Gosden’s opinion about Enable’s race readiness was echoed by jockey Frankie Dettori. There’s a good chance that Jack Hobbs will also run at Ascot this year.