Gambling: Video Games:Written question - 114881

Asked by Andrew Gwynne
(Denton and Reddish)
Asked on: 21 November 2017
Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
Gambling: Video Games
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, pursuant to the Answer of 16 October to Question 106042, on gambling: video games, what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of current legislation in protecting people against loot boxes within computer games.
Answered by: Tracey Crouch
Answered on: 27 November 2017

Consumers of virtual items within video games are protected by the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008. This includes a requirement on businesses not to subject anyone to misleading or aggressive marketing practices, or, for example, direct exhortation to buy products, such as games content, including in-game purchases such as loot boxes. The government is committed to ensuring that consumers are properly protected and that children’s vulnerability and inexperience is not exploited by aggressive commercial practices.

The government’s Internet Safety Strategy sets out how the government will work with online platforms, game publishers and game developers, and with agencies such as the VSC Rating Board, to continue to improve online safety in games.

We recognise the risks that come from increasing convergence between gambling and video games. The Gambling Commission is keeping this matter under review and will continue to monitor developments in the market.

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