Can You Be Banned Or Limited By A Betting Exchange?

Limited AccountFor successful punters, it feels as though it is becoming more and more common to see their accounts being limited or even banned merely for having the audacity to win a few bets. Whilst this shouldn’t happen in theory, in practice it tends to happen on a regular basis and bettors are the ones that suffer.

As a result, a lot of people tend to turn towards the betting exchanges, believing that they are much less likely to have their accounts restricted there given the fact that they are essentially the middlemen for peer-to-peer betting, taking a commission regardless of who wins.

Unfortunately, there are still somethings that might well result in your account being limited or even banned altogether. The good news is that those things tend to be ones that are breaking the terms and conditions of the website in question, so provided you’re happy to play by the rules there is a good chance that your account won’t ever come under question.

That is certainly the case if all you’re doing is winning, but it can become more complicated if you’re doing things that they think you shouldn’t be, even if you’re not aware that you shouldn’t have been doing them.

How Betting Exchanges Work

calculating markets and margins bookies exchangesIn order to understand why it is that people might ask the question about being banned or limited from a betting exchange, it is first important to understand how they work.

Presuming that you’re not exactly a heavy user, placing occasional bets on the likes of the football or a golf tournament, say, then you will find that the betting exchange makes its money by charging the winner a fee that essentially amounts to commission. Betting exchanges are simply platforms that put two people together in order for one of them to make a bet and the other to accept it.

They make their money by charging the winner a commission, which usually sits at around 5%. As a result of this, they don’t really care who wins the bet or how much money they end up winning, instead being happy enough that they’re making their 5% on a regular basis.

The more successful a punter is, the more they’ll make from them and there is even the possibility that they’ll make enough to mean that the Betfair Premium Charge, which you can read about in more detail on this site, comes into effect. In other words, there is no reason why someone should have their Betfair exchange account limited, yet some people do.

Banned Because You Won?

Winning BettorBettors will always be concerned that they will end up getting their account banned because they have won too much. Sportsbook operators will often ban people for this reason, although it is an entirely different reason why they will actually give for the ban.

As a result, people will often be successful that winning a lot of bets will result in them seeing their account limited or banned. The good news is that exchange operators tend not to ban punters simply because they’ve been winning on a regular basis. As mentioned, they make their money either way so why would they?

The idea behind the betting exchange system is that it makes placing bets fair and transparent for the people that use it. As a result, if you’re using it in an entirely fair and above board manner then there is no reason why you’ll find your account limited or banned.

There is no reason why the exchange platform would stop you from betting, given the fact that this will stop them from making their regular profit from you. Unlike with regular bookmakers, therefore, there is no reason why a betting exchange operator would limit or ban your account simply because you’ve been successful.

You Can Get Banned, Though

suspend word in dictionary close upJust because a betting exchange operator is not going to ban you simply for having the audacity to win some bets you’ve placed with them, that doesn’t mean that they won’t find another reason to ban you. That being said, ‘find another reason’ suggests that they will be looking for an excuse to ban you, when the reality is that they’ll only really do it if you’ve broken the terms and conditions of your account.

Here is a look at some of the reasons why betting exchange operators might look to limit your account, or even put a complete ban on it:

You’re Using Multiple Accounts

multi walletThere are limits in place on how punters can make use of their account, including the idea of placing the kinds of bets that are likely to manipulate the market odds. As a result, people are restricted to only using one account, with the use of multiple accounts tending to be banned by all betting companies, including betting exchanges.

There are sophisticated algorithms at play that move to detect suspicious activity from users, resulting in the limiting of accounts that are suspected of being multiple account users or even shutting them down altogether.

People can have multiple accounts for all sorts of reasons, including opening a ‘new’ account in order to take advantage of an offer that is aimed at attracting genuinely new customers.

It also isn’t unheard of for people to open another account in order to gain an advantage via some other means, like promotion abuse or to get a bonus fund. If you’re discovered to be doing that then you will find that all of your accounts will be shutdown, presuming the exchange is able to prove that it is happening or else is particularly confident in their assertion that it’s what you’re doing.

Arbitrage Bets

arbitrage explained diagramThose that engage in arbitrage betting are looking to take advantage of the price difference between a bookmaker and an exchange. This allows them to secure their margin and guarantee a profit, which bookies are obviously not all that keen about.

There are usually restrictions in place to stop people from doing this, if for no other reason than doing it excessively can end up disrupting the market and possibly causing the exchange to lose money. There is an obvious reason why bookmakers are against it, given it means they’ll be losing more than they win.

Although betting exchanges don’t care too much about arbitrage betting, given the fact that they’ll make their profit regardless, they do care if it leads to punters multi-accounting or otherwise in order to take advantage of offers or promotions to lock-in a profit. The best way to avoid falling foul of this is to make sure that you don’t arbitrage bet with bookmakers and exchanges that are from the same company.

If you’re doing it with Paddy Power and the Betfair exchange, for example, there is a good chance that you’ll end up having your account limited.


Fraud CalculatorOne of the most problematic activities that punters can engage, as far as betting sites are concerned at least, is fraudulent activity. There are strict rules and regulations in place from the likes of the United Kingdom Gambling Commission in order to ensure that fraud can’t happen, so bookmakers and betting exchanges will act swiftly and decisively if they think that it might be.

The likes of insider trading, market manipulation and match-fixing are all serious things that will mean that your account will be limited if you’re lucky but more likely closed altogether if you’re caught.

Betting exchanges operate as a matter of trust, with their peer-to-peer nature meaning that it is one punter up against another. Someone breaking the trust that the other bettor has placed in them is not going to be treated well by the exchange, if for no other reason than they might end up losing their licence if it emerges that they knew about the fraudulent activity but didn’t do anything about it.

Of course, if you are knowingly committing fraud or trying to launder money then you will be aware that you might well have your account suspended, also being aware that that’s likely to be the least of your problems.

Betting With A Syndicate

syndicate word dictionarySometimes, a group of people choose to pool their resources in order to place bets, knowing that doing so will give them more money to play with and therefore the potential of greater returns. Doing this isn’t illegal or even prohibited in some cases, but a lot of betting exchanges tend to have rules in place about it.

The aim is to stop collusion from taking place and to stop betting syndicates from manipulating the markets, given the fact that this might make things better for the syndicate but much worse for the rest of the users of the exchange, which isn’t fair.

Syndicates look to use the combined skills and resources of their members in order to make it more likely that their bets will win. The issue is that all of those people putting their money together in order to place a bet is more likely to move the market than if those same people had placed bets individually, which is what makes it such a problem.

It is also worth pointing out that someone might enter into a bet with a syndicate thinking that they’re only betting against one person, making it unfair. If you’re believed to be part of a syndicate, there’s a chance your account will be suspended at the very least.

Breaking The Terms Of Service

terms and conditions written on type writerEvery betting company, which includes betting exchanges, has a strict set of terms and conditions. The second you open an account and place a bet, you are effectively saying that you agree to these terms and conditions, meaning that you will obey them whilst you’re a customer.

If you violate the terms and and conditions that are in place, you might find that you get your account limited or shutdown as a result. This can include the likes of sharing account information or using fake identities, for example. It is why it is important to read the Ts and Cs and know what you’re agreeing to.

Some people will always look to gain an edge, pushing things too fair in their pursuit of profits. If you’re using your account in the way that it is intended to be used then you don’t need to worry, but if you’re trying to get one over on the person that you’re betting with on the exchange then the reality is that you’re soon going to find your account being limited.

You might get away with it for a short time, but the algorithms in place are too good and are only getting better, meaning that you will be caught eventually and you will likely lose access to your exchange account as a result.

Complying With Regulations

Court Case StarSportsBetting exchanges are just like any other gambling company, insomuch as they operate within the confines of a regulatory framework. You are required to comply with legal and financial requirements, so if you don’t do it then you’re going to fall foul of the regulations that are in place for the exchange operator.

Sometimes you might be aware that you’re breaking the rules and are happy to take the risk, willing to try to win a profit in the short-term even if it means you can’t use the exchange in the long-term. Other users won’t be aware that what they’re doing is wrong.

One of the things that it is important to realise is that the policies surrounding the likes of regulations and the consequences for breaking them can differ from exchange company to exchange company. Whilst one might say that what you’ve done is enough to have your account limited, another might say that there is no option to but close your account altogether.

Ultimately, though, it will depend on the breach, given the fact that every company has to answer to the Gambling Commission and there might well be a need to shutdown your account completely in order to avoid a fine or worse.

Using A VPN

someone using a vpnA VPN, or ‘Virtual Private Network,’ is a service that can add a layer of security anyone’s online operation. It is common for people using the internet in a public cafe, for example, to want to use a VPN in order to keep themselves even more secure than just using the internet without any such protection.

Provided you don’t already have some form of malware on your computer, you will be much safer if you surf the internet using a VPN. The problem that you might find, though, is that some bookmakers have it in their terms and conditions that you’re not allowed to place bets whilst connected to a VPN.

Virtual Private Networks are entirely legal to use, presuming you’re in a country where they’re not banned. It is illegal to use to them in China and Iraq, for example, but then online betting isn’t necessarily legal there anyway, so if you’re using a VPN to do it then you’re already aware that you’re going to be pushing the boundaries of legality.

It becomes even more complicated if you’re actively using a VPN to place bets from a country where betting is illegal, which is why a lot of bookmakers ban their use altogether. The obviously question to ask is why it is they’ll care.

VPNs can be used to disguise your IP address. This matters because betting companies often use your IP address in order to keep track of whether you’re trying to use multiple accounts, so if you’re discovered trying to place bets using a Virtual Private Network then it is possible that your account will be closed as a result. Equally, you might choose to use a VPN because you’re in a country where betting is legal, but you can’t login to the local version of your chosen bookmaker, meaning you use a VPN to connect to the UK and place your bet. This isn’t allowed either and if you’re found doing it, you might have to bit goodbye to your betting account.

Abusive Behaviour

abuse signThe final thing to mention when it comes to possibly getting your exchange account limited or closed down is being abusive. Whilst betting exchanges exist online, there is no reason why the people who work for such companies should be expected to put up with rudeness or abuse any more than someone working in a betting shop on the high street should be.

Threats, inappropriate language or abusive behaviour are all things that can quickly result in your account being suspended or, if too egregious, shut down completely. The world of the exchange isn’t one to ignore such poor behaviour.

The idea mooted elsewhere that a betting exchange is one to be used fairly by all concerned means that someone being rule or abusive simply won’t be tolerated. It isn’t just the staff at the exchange that you can be rude to either. If you’re rude or abusive to another punter then there is a strong chance that they might decide to take their business elsewhere, which obviously wouldn’t be good for the company.

It goes without saying that it ultimately comes down to the bottom line, so anything that might end up taking profit away from the betting