Gambling Blocking Apps And Tools
Gambling addiction is a problem that’s always going to exist. Thankfully, a lot of work is being done to prevent people from becoming addicted to gambling and to help those who are experiencing problems because they play casino games too much. One of the most effective resources available to gamblers is blockers.
What blockers do is they prevent you from accessing gambling sites, e.g. online casinos and sportsbooks. There are two main types: general blockers, which can block any website you wish and let you set your own restrictions; gambling-specific blockers, which completely obstruct your access to sites where you can gamble with real money.
Blockers can be pieces of software you can download onto your computer or laptop. They can also be apps that can be downloaded onto smartphones or tablets. Whatever form they come in, they work in pretty much the same way.
What’s important to point out is that while these are designed to help, they’re not a complete solution. In other words, using a blocker may not get rid of a gambling addiction problem altogether. If you use one but find that you’re still experiencing problems of some kind, don’t hesitate to get in touch with a reputable gambling addiction charity, such as GamCare or GambleAware.
In this article, we’ll summarise four of the best and most reliable gambling blockers available right now. These are as follows:
For each one, there’s plenty of information about the service and what it does, as well as a link to its official site. Have a read through these summaries to get an idea of what each one’s like and how the four services compare with one another.
Available on four types of device (Windows, Mac, Android and iOS), Gamban is a user friendly and intuitive solution that’s designed to help those struggling with online gambling. The installation process is quick and straightforward, though should you have any problems the support team are always ready to help you out. In just a few taps or clicks and following a simple registration process, you’ll have everything set up and won’t be able to visit gambling sites.
Once installed, Gamban runs in the background. As you use your device, you won’t see anything from Gamban unless you try to visit a gambling site of some kind. If you attempt this, the site will be blocked and you’ll see a notification from Gamban telling you it’s a blocked site.
If you like the sound of this option and are thinking about trying it out yourself, head over to the official website. Gamban is currently offering a free trial lasting seven days, as well as two subscription options. There’s the Cool Off monthly subscription costing €2.99 a month and the Exclusion annual subscription costing €2.49 a month. Both options offer the full array of Gamban features, along with the seven day free trial.
What makes Gamban especially useful is that it doesn’t just block you from online casinos and sportsbooks; access to any sort of gambling or trading site is restricted. Even if you happen to access a gambling site, Gamban will block your ability to carry out transactions so you can’t
Like Gamban, BetFilter is available on Windows, Mac, Android and iOS devices. Since launching in 2008, it’s helped many problem gamblers abstain from spending money at gambling sites. It’s specially designed to block access to any type of site, app or server that offers real-money gambling services. The installation process is easy and quick, and any updates are offered free of charge. Once installed, BetFilter remains active for your entire license period and can’t be uninstalled until the period is over. Speaking of licensing, there are two options available. You can purchase a license that lasts one year for $5.83 per month, or buy one that lasts for two years for $4.95 per month.
What BetFilter offers is complete discretion. When it’s downloaded, it remains hidden in the background and there won’t be any notifications or alerts popping up or anything like that. Updates are completely discreet, too; they’re also automatic, so you don’t even have to do anything for the newest version to be installed on your devices.
BetFilter has an earned an impressive reputation in the twelve years that it’s been offering its gambling blocking services. It’s been recognised as an effective way of helping with gambling addiction by a range of companies and organisations, including SkyBet, GamCare, Gambling Therapy and BetSafe, to name a few.
Unlike Gamban and BetFilter, BetBlocker is completely free. In fact, it doesn’t even have adverts to fund its costs – it’s funded by a service specialising in resolving online gambling disputes. If you download BetBlocker and set up Gambling Self-Restriction, you’ll be blocked from accessing any of the sites in BetBlocker’s extensive database – at the time of writing, there are 13,453 sites listed. This database is updated weekly so that users are protected from as many potentially harmful sites as possible. When setting up Self-Restriction, there are several options to choose from: block access for as little as 24 hours, or as much as five years; you can even choose to have access blocked indefinitely.
BetBlocker lets you block access to other sites as well as gambling ones. It also offers the Parental Control tool that lets parents put together a list of sites they want their children to be denied access to. They can restrict their children from accessing any type of site, including ones that offer gambling services.
One thing that’s worth pointing out about BetBlocker is that it’s technically still in beta mode. You’re encouraged to get in touch with the team, which you can do through the official site, if you notice
anything wrong or if you have a question that isn’t listed in the FAQ section
GAMSTOP, like BetBlocker, is completely free. However, it’s only available to those in the UK and it only blocks gambling sites operated by companies licensed in the UK. Should you decide to use this service, you’ll still be able to access some sites – it’s suggested you consider this before deciding if GAMSTOP is the option for you.
If you decide to use GAMSTOP, getting everything set up should only take a few minutes. There are three exclusion options to choose from: six months, one year or five years. Whichever one you choose, you will be blocked from the sites for the designated time period, though it can take up to 24 hours for this to come into effect. As well as the main site blocker service, GAMSTOP has a list of links to charities and helplines that offer debt support, emotional support and, of course, support with gambling problems.
What GAMSTOP doesn’t do is prevent gambling-related messaging from coming your way. If you receive marketing materials such as emails from online casinos and other similar sites, you’ll have
to unsubscribe from these yourself.
Do Gambling Blockers Actually Work?
The four gambling blockers we’ve listed above are the best known ones. Each one has a pretty good reputation and has been well rated both by people who have used it to help get over gambling addiction, as well as people who work in the gambling industry.
Using a gambling blocker isn’t guaranteed to completely cure anyone of a gambling addiction problem. Blockers can produce good results, but if you’re going to use one, it’s important that you don’t just rely on the software or app to do everything for you. Yes, gambling sites will be blocked, but you’ve still got to do things yourself, such as not giving in to the temptation to gamble on a different device that doesn’t have a blocker installed, or visiting land-based casinos to get your gambling fix.
If you have a gambling problem or you think you’re heading in that direction, blockers can be a really effective tool to use. It’s important that you consider other things to help yourself, such as talking things over with friends or family, or getting in touch with a charity that specialises in gambling addiction.
Gambling with real money can be a fun hobby. It’s easy to become addicted to it, especially since there’s always the chance of winning money and making a profit. Always gamble sensibly. Come up with a budget of money you can afford to lose and once you’ve spent your budget, stop gambling and do something else. Moderation is key. Enjoy gambling in small doses every now and then and don’t become obsesses over making money from it because the odds are always against you. Luckily these days, if you do end up becoming addicted, there’s a huge amount of help and support available.