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The number of self-excluded players in the Netherlands more than doubled between 1 January 2023 and 1 January 2024, from 30,806 to 60,902.

A total of 76,000 people self-excluded from gambling in the Netherlands during 2023, though most did so for a period lasting less than one year.

Of the new exclusions in 2023, 20,000 were terminated automatically during the year while around 26,000 players chose to end their exclusion periods themselves.

That left almost 61,000 still registered with the Netherlands’ Cruks self-exclusion system as of the end of the year.

The figures were included in the Netherlands Gambling Authority’s (KSA) 2023 Annual Report.

Length of self-exclusion

When Dutch gamblers opt to exclude themselves from gambling, they can choose the duration for which they wish to remain excluded.

The minimum period is six months, but many opt for longer, with some choosing an effective ‘for life’ period of 99 years.

In 2023, 21.8% of self-excluded customers opted for the minimum six-month period, compared to 35% in 2022.

That reduction in customers choosing the minimum period was also reflected in a significant increase in the average duration of self-exclusion chosen, which shot up from 13 years in 2022 to 22 years and eight months in 2023.

Those figures suggest an increasing number of registered Cruks users opting for self-exclusion periods of significantly greater length.

Operator checks

Licensed operators in the Netherlands must check the details of new sign-ups against the Cruks register before customers can be allowed to play.

The number of checks carried out by operators increased to 40.3 million per day in December 2023, compared to 31 million per day in January.

December was therefore the year’s busiest month for checks against Cruks, followed by October with 39.4 million checks per day, November with 35.3 million, and September with 35 million.

KSA contact with the public

Cruks was also cited as the main reason for members of the public contacting the KSA during the year.

In 2023, members of the public made contact with the KSA 5,534 times, up from 3,999 times in 2022.

Of the total contact points, 3,873 enquiries concerned the Cruks self-exclusion register, compared to 2,168 enquiries in 2022.

The large number of enquiries related to Cruks last year was caused by adjustments to the register and its website, the KSA said.

For example, the regulator took many questions on an eight-day cooling off period, introduced for players looking to remove themselves from the Cruks register in order to prevent impulsive decision making.

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