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10 May 21 20:48
Date Joined: 07 May 10
| Topic/replies: 618 | Blogger: thesportinglife's blog
Can someone post the post`s above article, thanks in advance.
Pause Switch to Standard View Racing Post Betfair affordability...
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Report Ramruma May 10, 2021 9:20 PM BST
Betfair punters have hit out at "intrusive" affordability checks claiming the exchange has requested information on where winnings have been spent as well as detailed documentation on income before lifting restrictions placed on accounts.

The level of information required from Betfair has turned some users away from betting, primarily on horseracing. One punter said the extent of the information being sought made the experience more invasive than applying for a mortgage.

Betfair are the latest bookmaker reported to be pre-emptively imposing affordability checks on their customers, despite the fact a controversial recent Gambling Commission consultation on the subject – which attracted a record number of responses – has yet to yield any official regulatory changes.

Lee Keys, a professional punter and Betfair user since 2003, said he received an email from the company "out of the blue" a month ago informing him an affordability restriction had been placed after he had made a number of deposits due to "a bad run".

Keys, who says his net winnings on the exchange are £700,000 and that he has previously been through stringent Know Your Customer checks, said: "With betting on Betfair being my living I reluctantly agreed to give them documentation. They asked for proof of funds – home ownership, land ownership, assets etc, bank statements – and I provided a bank statement and a share statement.

"I told them that across the board I earned £115,000 last year and they then asked where the £115,000 profit had gone, which is when I told them that enough was enough.

"What I didn't like is that they wanted more and that, to me, is a bit sinister. Why didn't they want that in the first place? Why would I provide details of my current and share accounts but then they want to see where the money I made went as well? I'm not having any of that."

He added: "If this is what you have to do to have a bet then how many people are going to go through this? I've been asked less intrusive questions when I've gone for a mortgage and it's absolutely ludicrous."

Another casual Betfair Exchange punter who spoke to the Racing Post said he was planning to rein back his betting on horseracing, which accounted for 90 per cent of his bets, after he was restricted to depositing no more than £1,500 a month.

In emails shared with the Racing Post, the user is told by Betfair's due diligence department that the restrictions will remain in place unless "a full explanation as to how you are funding your account (eg salary or other income) along with documentation that illustrates this" and "a copy of a bank statement dated within the last three months (name and address must also be clearly visible)" are provided, which the user has refused to do due to the nature of his full-time job.

Having informed Betfair that the deposits being made were from previous winnings and providing details of the account used on the exchange, the customer was then told he would need to show bank statements going back many months to prove that was the case.

An email from a senior Betfair employee to the user said: "I acknowledge that your account is in a profitable position over a longer term period, but in order to revert to your previous limits, we would need to gain comfort that your recent activity was funded by your previous winnings or that you have access to sufficient income/funds that would support a higher limit."

A spokesman for Betfair said: "There are multiple reasons we would ask customers for additional information. As a responsible gambling operator, Betfair has a range of controls in place to protect our customers and to ensure we meet our legal and regulatory obligations.

"We can't comment on individual cases but as part of the controls and processes we have in place to protect our customers and meet our obligations we may require an extra level of information from customers to ensure their activity is appropriate.

"Where we do request this information, customers can be assured we will deal with this information securely, discretely and in as swift a timeframe as possible."

Customer interaction, which closed in Febuary, included a proposal that a monthly net gambling loss of as little as £100 would mean punters would have to prove their income in order to continue to bet.

This has caused huge concern for British racing's leadership, who fear the sport could lose upwards of £60 million a year from lost levy and media rights income if punters are put off by intrusive questions about their finances.

A report by the Daily Telegraph last week claimed the Gambling Commission would not be allowed to act unilaterally on affordability checks, with the findings of its consultation being considered as part of the government's wider gambling review and the likelihood being that affordability checks would be watered down or shelved altogether.

However, in the meantime many punters have reported that bookmakers have already introduced often intrusive affordability checks.

In March, the Horseracing Bettors Forum said it had been contacted by several punters because of checks requested by the Tote, where a low-level trigger of £750 in total deposits appears to have been introduced.

Colin Hord, chairman of the Horseracing Bettors Forum, said: "We've responded to both consultations on affordability checks the Gambling Commission raised and also the Gambling Act review which we included some statements on affordability checks. Both times we've made the case that these checks need to be proportionate and should not be unnecessarily intrusive into people's financial affairs.

"There's a reasonableness that needs to be maintained. With Betfair we also want to ensure that people's previous betting history is taken into account and we've seen that quite a number of bettors have profitable accounts but run into losing runs and their profitability is not being taken into account when undertaking the affordability checks.

"Our concern is the level of intrusiveness and the level of information that's having to be provided."

He added: "The other thing worth raising is what qualification do the people within these bookmaking companies have to make the assessment that these people are or are not to continue gambling? That works both ways, because you can argue they'd be keen to keep people betting but in other respects they're cautious about who they're letting continue and who not."

Entain has also launched checks across all of its 14 brands as part of an initiative designed to identify customers in the UK at the greatest risk of potential financial problems, and to implement staking limits and tighter affordability checks.
Report 11kv May 10, 2021 9:28 PM BST
Report thesportinglife May 10, 2021 9:33 PM BST
This really is getting ridiculous, we all moved over to Betfair because of restrictions or closed accounts from the bookies and now Betfair are gonna restrict us if we have a losing run,so will the Bookies invite us back !
Report devilsadvocate May 10, 2021 9:44 PM BST
Ironic that BF want to talk about responsible gambling when the sites been down most of the eveningScared
Report salmon spray May 10, 2021 9:51 PM BST
That'll stop you all losing money you can't afford      Devil
Report screaming from beneaththewaves May 10, 2021 10:35 PM BST
I wasn't expecting it to turn out this way at all. My concern had been that these checks were going to weed out all the mugs and losers. And then who was going to be left for the winners to win off?

In fact, it looks like they're weeding out the long-term winners instead - those punters who are in overall profit who have the resources to continue depositing during losing runs.

The important thing for the punters left is not to withdraw any more than the bare minimum you need to live off, so you can avoid having to make deposits in the future.
Report know all May 11, 2021 1:29 AM BST
They are targeting winners
Report JetLoneStar May 11, 2021 1:41 AM BST
No more deposits then.
Report undertaker May 11, 2021 5:54 AM BST
There is another obvious worry, even if you do manage to stay under the radar. That is, if enough people stop betting on horse racing, there won't be any liquidity on here anyway.
Report Storm Alert May 11, 2021 7:58 AM BST
Isn't the right to privacy enshrined in the Magna Carta? History tells us attempts to restrict civil liberty usually ends badly.
Report geoff m May 11, 2021 9:25 AM BST
The industry is dying a slow death. But it looks like many want to speed it up.
Report Brian May 11, 2021 9:58 AM BST
Well said Geoff.
Report The Management May 11, 2021 10:05 AM BST
Two thoughts - one a surprise the other not:

Not a surprise - as with any new legislations and/or regulation the books twist it to suit their agenda and interpret it to their advantage. In most of the cases highlighted, although it's not even a requirement yet, it looks/sounds like "affordability" it's being used as another cover to weed out undesirable (winning) customers.

The bit that is a surprise - a lot of these self-professed "pro-punters" do seem to make an awful lot of deposits! Shocked
Report undertaker May 11, 2021 10:15 AM BST
Why should Betfair care if I am winning or not (on the Exchange)?

Also, I used to make regular withdrawals as I liked to keep my balance below a certain threshold because I didn't see the point keeping excess money on Betfair. I would get one of the "we want to talk about responsible gambling" emails every time I deposited, but I just ignored them. Since this affordability nonsense started I haven't made a withdrawal or deposit for ages and my balance is higher than I would prefer to keep on here, but if the alternative is to have to provide 3 years' worth of nail clippings or whatever, I can live with that.
Report Ramruma May 11, 2021 10:16 AM BST
@The Management -- a lot of the self-professed pro-punters withdraw their winnings immediately so must make a new deposit next time they fancy a bet. Hence, lots of deposits.
Report howard May 11, 2021 10:20 AM BST
Looks like if you have a heavy monthly spend on £600 an hour escorts and johnnie walker blue label you will be fine.
Report undertaker May 11, 2021 10:28 AM BST
Nah, I don't drink whisky.
Report The Management May 11, 2021 10:34 AM BST
I don't remember the last time I made a deposit - all these people in these articles (constantly withdrawing and depositing) sound like arbers to be honest.

This has been on the cards for months - plenty of time for any "pro" to see what was coming and avoid it imo
Report The Management May 11, 2021 10:37 AM BST
undertaker11 May 21 09:15Joined: 21 Nov 02 | Topic/replies: 218 | Blogger: undertaker's blog
Why should Betfair care if I am winning or not (on the Exchange)?

Sorry - but that's just naive - it stopped being a p2p exchange about 14 years ago. If you are winning "too much" or "too quickly" they have measures in place - they clearly have a preferred customer type/MO.
Report undertaker May 11, 2021 10:45 AM BST
TM, I don't think I'm being remotely naive. I am a "traditional" punter who bets pre-race, I don't win every day, I don't win every week, but it has been a long, long time since I had a losing month, and (crucially) I pay plenty in commission. So why should Betfair care if I am winning or not?
Report undertaker May 11, 2021 10:46 AM BST
Oh, and I'm not a trader, I only place back bets.
Report The Management May 11, 2021 10:57 AM BST
Undertaker - I'm just pointing out it's not really a (p2p) exchange anymore and hasn't been for a long time.

So I wouldn't be too sure that your statement "Why should Betfair care if I am winning or not (on the Exchange)?" fully holds water.

The PP mindset is there for all to see. I would be VERY surprised if they don't have some kind of customer grading.

In very crude terms - losers are (mostly) good for business, winners that pay PC are (mostly) good for business - but I would imagine there is a "grade" of player that isn't deemed sufficiently good for business and/or "the ecosystem". Most obviously that might include winners that aren't deemed to be paying enough commission (despite all of the measures in place to trap such players).
Report The Management May 11, 2021 11:07 AM BST
In short - I don't think it's accurate (given the ownership of the exchanges) to assume that the mindset and strategic/financial aim of exchange operators is significantly different to the mindset and strategic/financial aim of the books.

Black and Wray sold-out (don't blame them) and those days ("Join the Revolution" etc) are long gone.
Report dave1357 May 11, 2021 11:26 AM BST
winners that pay PC are (mostly) good for business - but I would imagine there is a "grade" of player that isn't deemed sufficiently good for business and/or "the ecosystem". Most obviously that might include winners that aren't deemed to be paying enough commission (despite all of the measures in place to trap such players)

But people like me pay higher commission on my meagre winnings than PC payers - that is why I don't pay PC.  Those who do have (or had at some point) a huge edge which non PC players don't.
Report Rigsby May 11, 2021 11:33 AM BST
“ I'm just pointing out it's not really a (p2p) exchange anymore and hasn't been for a long time.”

100% agree
FWIW – my observations of the markets (soccer) suggest that they are held together by the market maker and some other bots. Both sides of the market are controlled, and except for the bigger leagues games, genuine betting money from punters is in short supply. Maybe the exchange wont be around in a couple of years.
A cynic may say that doing all these affordability checks is to send a message to government that they are doing something, in an attempt to water down unwanted proposals that the government would otherwise make.
Betting is a minority hobby/occupation, and I have been involved for a long time, but momentum seems to be building in society for things to change. Too many people are hooked.
Most sports have sold themselves to the betting industry, and IMO too many lives are being impacted by this. All betting ads, including slots, show everybody winning and free this free that. We understand the reality, sadly those that suffer do not.
Finally, to the winners: your winnings come from the losers.
Report G Hall May 11, 2021 11:50 AM BST
Good accurate post Rigby.
Report mitolo May 11, 2021 12:08 PM BST
there is a good reason for people not to leave money in notfair. they can take it off you. i know of someone who logged in to find himself 4k light, and was told to get lost when he complained. they said he was avoiding the pc but there was no evidence beyond circumstantial.
Report Duncan Disordorli May 11, 2021 12:38 PM BST
Had to check it wasn't April 1st. What breathtaking audacity, how dare ANY company ask a client how he or she spends their money. Imagine anyone telling the truth just so they can continue is unthinkable that anyone will comply even if this is their only form of income.
Anyone even thinking of playing Betfair's miserable game is likely paying the obscene Premium Charge as well, how much more of this will you take ? Imagine a pop up midway through a disastrous losing afternoon advising that you have reached both your losing and deposit limits...accept this and that will be the future.
The message is clear lads...the game has gone. Leave it to the parasite companies fleecing their mug punters, Let the woman at £3.65 earn her obscene salary and accept that every firm including the once brilliant Betfair wants to be in that league.  Anyone considering assisting them achieve that through outrageous strokes like this should give up gambling today.
Report kevinglass May 11, 2021 12:56 PM BST
I wonder what info is acceptable, to prove income/savings. You can have money for so many reasons without it being dirty.

You can inherit 5 or 10 years ago, the odds of you keeping any info about that is slim.
You save it up from your income over 30 years, do they want 30 years Bank Statements.
You can win from the bookies & lose on here, do they want copies of winning betting slips.

In Banking when money laundering started being checked, I remember we inconvenienced hundreds, and pretty much stopped nothing. Anyone with any sense always stayed one step ahead.

As for being asked what you spend your money keep your receipts from Tesco's, just in case.
Report punts May 11, 2021 1:12 PM BST
EVERY advert on commercial radio is for "Betfair Casino: FREE spins"... "Billy Hills Vegas", etc etc.

I'm starting to see Management's point...

We do not care for the casino chit!
Report Rigsby May 11, 2021 1:23 PM BST
Back in the day, the working man got paid weekly in cash on a Friday. It was his choice how much he spent on betting, booze, ****, housekeeping for missus, etc etc. If he was skint by Saturday teatime, that was it. No more cash till next Friday. No credit card, no bank account, no betting credit account. His life/spending was controlled by his readies. No click on a mouse, no advertising, no casino's. Sports Report at 5pm on a Saturday for the footy results and the dream of 8 draws.
Report howard May 11, 2021 1:27 PM BST
Some had lost everything after  Saturday morning dogs.
Report dustybin May 11, 2021 1:39 PM BST
I read the request about spending last year's profit as simply meaning is it now collateral?
Think the story has over egged the part about what its gone on, they might simply have asked if he still has anything.

I find it counter intuitive howver if you are a regular PC payer to have been asked any such questions.
How can they argue you might not be fit to play but are fit to have egregious artificial charges?
Report bigbillbovington May 11, 2021 1:52 PM BST
When working in London  I will have a coffee before work, and a coffee and a snack at about 10/30, all from the same shop, come Friday l have spent about £40 quid in there, they don't ask for a bank statement, the normally say this coffees on the house, see you monday
Report dustybin May 11, 2021 2:13 PM BST
flutter shares taking a bit of damage
But then quite a few are today
Inflationary concerns making a strong £
Report BIGNORM. May 26, 2021 5:50 PM BST
I have just received the email from Betfair requesting bank statements and various ID. I would strongly recommend that nobody sends such information to Betfair. It exceeds the information that even a bank would require to authorise a mortgage. I suspect if fraud occurred on your bank account and it was proven that you had supplied such information to an organisation like Betfair that you would have no chance of the bank reimbursing any monies that you had lost.
Report swiftynifty May 26, 2021 6:48 PM BST
I got the impression from today's Post that they were rowing back from such intrusive checks, prioritising 'those displaying signs of problem gambling'.
Report The Management May 26, 2021 6:59 PM BST
The Racing Post being the Racing Post - they never print sufficient detail to give any sort of insight or understanding about the matter - and of course they have an agenda.

You don't know if it's some old boy that's come into a few quid and doubled his stakes to 30 pence or a bank robber type betting in thousands. As ever the reporting is just dire.
Report swiftynifty May 26, 2021 7:07 PM BST
I'd be fairly certain they know exactly who the problem gamblers are, the ones who used to deposit on credit cards, the ones making multiple deposits daily, those withdrawing small amounts, then redepositing etc etc, in other words exactly the kind of customers they want to keep. Source of funds is another issue completely and the bookmakers are not the fraud squad.
Report EastLower Gooner May 26, 2021 7:08 PM BST
Can they decline you if they don’t approve of how you spent your money?

Would make for an interesting case imo

Actually you know what...I would turn this around and ask the question...where is Betfair spending their money?

I want to see their accounts and statements so I can take comfort (as they put it) in knowing that a company I’ve used for closed 2 decades is using their funds in a responsible and moral way.

How do I know their profits aren’t going to ISIS?

Now I’m interested...accounts, bank statements...also would like their directors to complete my KYS (know your supplier) checks.
Report barstool May 26, 2021 7:21 PM BST
Your better not leaving a chunk in just in case you pop your clogs. What happens to money in stagnant accounts?
Report geoff m May 26, 2021 7:27 PM BST
forms part of your estate. providing you leave details for next of kin.
Report Crawford May 26, 2021 8:31 PM BST
I genuinely thought it was a clever and complicated scam.  Wanting copes of payslips/bank statements etc and I deleted it.  Shall be way of regularly depositing and withdrawing money as I have done over the pat year or so.
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