Tech Advances Promote Responsible Gambling
Problem gambling is an issue around the world, including in African countries. Technology continues to develop at a rapid rate, and is responsible for the explosion of gambling activities, and thus for at least part of the worldwide problem with irresponsible gambling behaviours. Now however, it seems tech could also be harnessed to help deal with these challenges.
Africa’s Mobile Gambling Growth
Mobile technology has already revolutionised the way most of the world functions in work, play and daily activities. The mobile revolution has been much faster than the preceding online revolution, and it has been especially important to African countries.
Where many people cannot afford desktop computers, almost everyone owns a smartphone. The rise in mobile payments is testament to how embedded this technology is becoming in administrative infrastructure.
An Omnipresent Pit Boss
Now, it seems mobile tech companies are looking to how they can help regulate the gambling industry, protecting customers against fraud and detecting early signs of problem betting behaviour.
At the Global Gaming Expo in October 2019, David Briggs explained how his company uses technology via sportsbook apps to determine whether a bettor is in a legal jurisdiction.
Briggs, who is Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian-based GeoComply, went on to say that the software can also be used to monitor how much someone is playing, and whether that amount or pattern is potentially destructive. In digital gaming, Briggs notes, all your personal details as well as your device location and ID are recorded.
This allows businesses like GeoComply to see every operator you are playing at, and every device you are using. As Briggs puts it, the tools exist to “provide a great safety net” and act like “an omnipresent pit boss” for all players.
As online, rather than in-person, registration becomes the norm in markets across America, this is very useful. Where mobile casinos are the most common gambling platform, as in most of Africa, it’s almost essential.
Best for Players and Operators
Technology already exists to take further steps, once problem gamblers have been identified. The account of the user who is displaying the self-destructive behaviour can be suspended, and this action can then be carried out across multiple operators. In America, it can also be executed across different states.
America’s legal online gambling sector is still very new, and Africa’s industry continues to develop and evolve at an exponential rate. As the industries become more regulated, the digital monitoring could prevent the levels of problem betting seen in the United Kingdom. In that country, the numerous online options are believed to be one of the main causes of high levels of gambling addiction.
As Keith O’Loughlin, Scientific Games Digital’s Senior Vice President of Sportsbook and Platforms said at the Global Gaming Expo, all operator and B2B thinking must factor in mechanisms to control and deal with problem gambling.
Supporting players ensures a sustained player life cycle, where customers are entertained rather than plagued by addictive behaviors. Ultimately, business models that support healthy gambling activity are better for both operators and players.