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The Betting and Gaming Council Introduces AI to Identify Player Behaviour on FOBTs

- November 20, 2019 By Oliver Young -

The newly formed Betting and Gaming Council (BGC), which is the single gambling industry association that represents online gambling businesses, has announced the introduction of a special algorithm that will observe and identify player behaviour on FOBTs.

A new algorithm to be added on FOBTs for identifying problem gambling, introduced by the Betting and Gaming Council.

A new algorithm to be added on FOBTs for identifying problem gambling, introduced by the Betting and Gaming Council.

BGC to Introduce AI in Fixed-Odds Betting Terminals

If you remember, the industry implemented a stake cut on FOBTs that took effect from April 1st, 2019. Since then, some operators have been accused of going around the stake cut, while others publicly admitted that the stake cut has had a bad impact on their businesses. However, their representative association has finally found the solution that would satisfy both operators and regulators’ conditions.

The BGC has come up with a real-time algorithm for FOBTs that identify player behaviour and especially areas of it which could indicate problem gambling. It is called Anonymous Player Awareness System (APAS), and it is the mean that will trigger an on-screen alert and set a “cooling-off” period for the player. The staff will be simultaneously alerted, so where appropriate, Responsible Gambling Interaction (RGI) will follow.

As presented by the BGC, the “cooling-off” period is just one of the tools already set in place on FOBTs, such as the stake cut and the time limit, and responsible gambling messages on the screens. This demonstrated that operators continued work to make sure that players have an enjoyable, but above all, safe experience.

The APAS system was first announced last week as part of the delivery of the “protecting and empowering customers” in the Safer Gambling Commitments. It was also announced then that £10 million of funding would be provided for an educational programme, which will be designed and delivered by YGam and GamCare for young people over the next four years.

Comments by the Executives at BGC

Brigid Simmonds OBE, the Chairman of the Betting and Gaming Council said that she was delighted of the launch of the new measures as part of the Responsible Gambling Week. She added that the Betting and Gaming Council’s mission was raising standards, and with the aid of the AI technology, it would create an environment that would promote safer play.

Wes Himes, the Interim Chief Executive, on the other hand, said that he saw this as an opportunity to champion the highest standards and share best practice on safe betting and gaming. He said that they hoped the new measures were a sign of intent. He was convinced that the approach could help restore public trust and concluded his comment saying that he was looking forward to working on further initiatives across the industry for safer betting and gambling.

The BGC was actively involved in the Responsible Gambling Week, and Simmonds stated that the BGC fully supported the diverse and inspiring initiatives and announcements of the past week. Simmonds added that although the Responsible Gambling Week helped in raising awareness effectively, only if they could ensure it drives enduring standards for the gambling industry, it would only be worthwhile.

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