Monzo trials ‘universal gambling block’ with TrueLayer open banking systems

Digital bank Monzo has partnered with compliance and open banking software provider TrueLayer to develop an ‘industry-wide universal gambling block’ solution for the financial services sector. 

The Fintech incumbents revealed that they are trialling an ‘open-banking API’ to develop a comprehensive gambling block solution, impeding transactions between financial service providers (banks, credit cards, e-wallets, loans, etc) and gambling businesses.

In 2018, Monzo became the first financial services firm to launch a gambling-block service, which customers could activate through its digital banking app.

Since launching its proprietary built gambling block, Monzo notes that more than 275,000 UK customers have activated the service ‘and less than 10% have ever switched it off permanently’.

Partnering with TrueLayer, Monzo will extend its gambling block as an open banking API feature available to all banks for integration.

“Everyone should have access to a gambling block, regardless of who they bank with – or how they pay,” Monzo disclosed in a blog announcing its partnership with TrueLayer.

“This is relatively simple for banks and open banking providers to put in place but can have a big impact on someone’s well-being. Other banks and open banking providers should follow our lead, to allow gambling blocks to cover non-card payments.”

This week, Monzo published a letter by company CEO TS Anil to DCMS, in which the company stated that the government should pursue increased enforcement of responsible gambling standards and safeguards should also be applied to financial services providers. 

Anil urged the government to implement a mandatory self-exclusion, covering all transactions between gambling operators and businesses that transact with the sector. 

“We believe the government should take the opportunity afforded by the Gambling Act review to make sure every consumer in the UK can access these blocks, regardless of who they bank with,” Anil’s statement read.

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