Home / Responsible Gambling / Underage Gambling

What Measures Are Taken to Prevent Underage Gambling?

For an online casino to obtain a gambling licence, they have to have certain protocols in place to be in line with the laws of the provinces in Canada. Know your customer (KYC) is a protocol that gathers and verifies your identity and financial information to make sure you are of legal gambling age and you have obtained your funds through legal means.

Online casinos take the following measures to prevent underage gambling:

  • The verification of identification documents, such as ID card, driver’s licence or passport.
  • Avoiding gambling material advertisements that can appeal to children, such as the use of cartoon-like characters.
  • The inclusion of underage gambling information in their terms of conditions.

What Is the Legal Gambling Age in Canada?

The legal gambling age in Canada depends on the province you are playing in.

Province Legal Age to Gamble
Alberta, Manitoba, Quebec 18 years
British Columbia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan 19 years

How to Prevent Minors from Accessing Your Gambling Account

As parents and adults, we have to take precautions. Follow these steps to prevent minors from accessing your gambling account:

  • Monitor the activity and spending of your gambling account regularly.
  • Use a strong password and change it regularly.
  • Don’t save password and payment information on your device or browser.
  • Always log out from your account when you’re done with your gambling session.
  • Use parental control tools to monitor and prevent your child from accessing gambling sites.
  • Be aware of your child’s screen time and monitor browser history to prevent their exposure to gambling-related material, such as but not limited to gambling streams.
  • Educate your children about the dangers of underage gambling.

Tools to Prevent Underage Gambling

There are a number of tools that can help you monitor and control the behaviour of your children to prevent access to gambling sites.

Net Nanny

Net Nanny is an easy-to-use software blocking tool that prevents your child from accessing and viewing adult content online. Apart from prevention, there are other features like screen time limitations, activity alerts and masking of inappropriate and vulgar language.

Qustodio

Qustodio helps parents monitor their child’s browser searches, filter and block inappropriate sites and games, control screen time and limit access to certain games. You can also choose to be alerted when someone tries to access blocked content. Qustodio is available for reading applications as well, such as Chromebook and Kindle.

Gamblock

If you are looking for something that automatically blocks gambling sites, Gamblock is the tool for you. Gamblock is often used by people with gambling problems or those who do not wish anyone in their household to gamble.

Advice: Most of these tools allow you to monitor and set limits to screen time. However, these tools should be accompanied by practical approaches, including leading by example, encouraging self-control and balance, educating them about the risks of excessive screen time, and fostering open communication.

What Are the Risks of Underage Gambling?

Underaged gambling comes with a range of risks for both yourself and the child. It’s of utmost importance to make sure the child is not gambling to prevent damage and possible addiction.

The risks of underaged gambling are:

  • Physiological and behavioural distress
  • Financial damage
  • Early addiction

Why Gambling Can Be Appealing to Minors?

There are many reasons why children may be tempted to gamble online. Aside from the associated thrill and excitement of winning, children may want to emulate your behaviour, if they’ve seen you gamble online, or they may use it as a way to escape from reality. The influence of media and advertising can’t be dismissed as well, as these often glamorize gambling and make it a desirable activity.

Signs of underaged gambling

As parents and adults, we have to be hyper-vigilant of any early signs of underage gambling. The earlier you spot it, the less damage it will do to you and your child. Look out for these signs:

  • Gambling account activity not related to your own.
  • Unexplained bank account activity.
  • Changes in mood and behaviour.
  • Increases in screen time.