Barclays lets customers block gambling transactions - MSE News

Barclays has today become the first UK high street bank to allow you to block payments to certain categories of retailer, such as gambling services and premium rate websites and phone lines, in a bid to help vulnerable customers...
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'Barclays lets customers block gambling transactions'
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  • The Barclays implementation is completely ineffective. In the application on your mobile you can instantly reenable prior blocks. You invariably have your phone and card with you. On gambling sites they typically offer the option to:

    1. Block until a specific date with no re-enablement being possible in the interim
    2. Only allow re-enablement to take place after x days
    3. Only allow re-enablement via phone call or personal visit to a shop

    Can you please continue to work with Barclays to improve their offer as as is it yields very very limited protection
  • This is clearly just an advertising gimmick that will actually do nothing substantial to address the problems it purports to. (Isn't it also Barclays with that annoying woman on the bus who can't remember which pocket she put her card in?)

    But, as an advertising ploy, it's certainly worked. So there's that I suppose.
    Conjugating the verb 'to be":
    -o I am humble -o You are attention seeking -o She is Nadine Dorries
  • Yes I did think when I saw the TV advert, "well that's pointless if you can just turn it on and off at a whim". If it works differently then yes it would be useful, but as Geoff98 says, currently a fairly pointless thing surely?
    Let me Google that for you...
  • Good for marketing Barclays, but for real gambling addicts, this is more like putting a plaster on an axe wound
  • Jlawson118
    Jlawson118 Posts: 1,132 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post
    The problem I see with this, is that you will more than likely be able to 'unblock' these transactions too. Although in sense it is a good idea. I'm mainly discussing the gambling side here:

    Many gambling websites (such as SkyBet) allow for these features where you can take a break for a while. I remember back in 2016 I locked my account for 30 days whilst the Euro Championships were on as I had been gambling a little more than I could afford prior to that. Not excessive amounts, but enough despite not earning anything at the time.

    This said, I just signed up for another service and started using theirs. In a situation like that, it is a good idea from Barclays because it would block any gambling website opposed to just one if you do it through that particular company. Although I can see this reducing online gambling quite significantly, but it will not stop a customer from withdrawing cash and taking this to a bookies, so in that sense, is it really going to tackle addiction?

    Although presuming this is aimed at tackling addictions such as online gambling/premium rate lines, the customer themselves has to admit that they have a problem and want to help themselves. Which most addicts don't realise they have a problem, or they do realise this, but they feel in such a bad place that they feel no other choice but to carry on doing what they're doing.

    And this kind of sways me away from banks offering services to block payments, when really we should be swaying into the UK having more mental health services and getting to the bottom as to why these people are suffering with these addictions, and working towards solutions for anybody battling these demons. Because like I said at the beginning, if you can block a payment, then you will more than likely have the opportunity to unblock them too. It might be harder, but there'll be a way of doing it.
  • I think this is to assist people who acknowledge they have a gambling problem and want something to help them stop.

    Gambling addiction is an control and impulse issue. Also, there is usually a catalyst that makes addicts want to gamble and the urge subsides within 24 hours. So a 48 hours cooling off period would make this tool much more effective.
  • It's obviously not perfect, but it's something. Even just a small psychological barrier to enabling an addiction can help.
    : )
  • It's obviously not perfect

    No. It's not. It's useless. FTA:
    If you later want to reactivate payments to a certain category of retailer, you can do this by turning the category back on in the app...

    There's no apparent delay, no hoops to jump through, no 'friction' as Martin puts it:
    Making something more difficult to do slows people down, and gives time to consider.

    This isn't making it 'difficult.' This is looking more and more like snakeoil.
    Conjugating the verb 'to be":
    -o I am humble -o You are attention seeking -o She is Nadine Dorries
  • Ian011
    Ian011 Posts: 2,432 Forumite
    Name Dropper First Anniversary First Post
    edited 12 December 2018 at 1:24AM
    "... 0870, 09 and 118 numbers ..."

    Why specifically 0870 and not other 084 and 087 numbers?

    What about calls to, and texts messages to, five-digit mobile shortcodes?

    As for blocking messages FROM five-digit shortcodes, this can only be done by the mobile phone operator. Simply blocking the phone from showing messages from shortcodes does not stop the charges being incurred.

    EDIT: Reading the article again, I now see it does not block calls to these numbers, it blocks "purchase of services". In that case, I am more than a little confused as to what it actually does and how this relates to expensive telephone numbers.
  • uptdale
    uptdale Posts: 154 Forumite
    First Anniversary Name Dropper First Post Combo Breaker
    Why don't Barclays let you use this in online banking, only in the mobile app, telephone banking and in branch - none of which I use?
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