Internet gambling rises by 40%

Latest Neilsen study shows that online gaming is gaining in popularity

The latest study from the independent media measurement company Neilsen showcases a rise in UK online gambling of 40 percent over the past year.

The research company reports that Britain has seen an additional 3.2 million people logging on to internet gambling websites last year, compared with only 2.2 million more who accessed social networking sites such as Facebook and its rivals.

Party pulled in an extra 870,000 visitors last year, increasing its audience by 174 percent, whilst Party grew by 360 percent over the same period.

Nielsen said almost half of all online gamblers earn more than GBP 30,000 a year, and that women comprise 46 percent of online players, encouraging operators to target the female demographic with websites that appeal to the feminine gender.

"The over-65s and those on lower household incomes have historically been heavy users of gambling sites, but in the face of the recession this profile is changing," said Neil Beston, of Nielsen.

"While the phenomenal growth in gambling sites over the last two years has been driven by men and women of all ages, it appears to be powered particularly by middle-aged men, the well-educated and high-earning households."

Independent gambling prevalence studies regularly commissioned by the UK Gambling Commission have shown that most internet gambling consists of wagering on the National Lottery.

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