07/08/2012 15:50 | By Matt Farrington-Smith, editor, MSN Tech & Gadgets

First gambling app launches on Facebook

'Bingo Friendzy' becomes Facebook's first bingo app to allow real cash bets.

On the surface Bingo Friendzy looks innocent enough. But something sinister lurks behind the app's cutesy facade.

Bingo Friendzy is a new gambling app for Facebook. Image MSN

Gambling apps are nothing new - the social network allows a raft of similar playthings to exist. However the difference this time lies in both the encouragement and staking of actual cash bets.

High stakes, real money

Unlike other apps that use credits (Facebook's own virtual currency), the new gambling app requires the player to add a credit card in order to fund their account. The only caveat being that players need to be 18 years of age (or over) to win cash prizes.

Unlike the US (where there are stricter rules on gambling via social media), the guidelines that govern such apps in the UK are hazy at best. This casts even more doubt over the introduction of such a Facebook app.

Definitely not for kids

Considering the age limit one also has to ask questions concerning who Gamesys are trying to target - given Bingo
Friendzy's cute and cuddly appearance. The Telegraph reports the game's cartoon branding bares more than a passing resemblance to that of children's favourite 'Moshi Monsters'. It states that prominent Christian groups are calling for an investigation into the game's breach of the ASA's Gambling Advertising rules.

Bingo Friendzy has been developed by Gamesys and on the 'about us' page is described as follows: "Discover our exclusive Bingo games where you can enjoy exciting bonus games, extra ball calls, and the chance to win huge Community Jackpots whilst chatting with friends!"

Gamesys are one of the UK's biggest online gambling providers - you might know them as the people who brought us Jackpotjoy Bingo.

A gamble too far

Let us know what you think in the comments below - do you think Facebook should be encouraging such gambling apps?

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