Tabcorp to Use Video Surveillance to Combat Underage Gambling

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Live and online gambling companies work diligently to combat underage online gambling. Tabcorp recently announced plans to install artificial intelligence video monitoring at TAB retailers to combat teen gambling.

By the middle of 2020, TAB retailers will have surveillance in place. This should prove helpful in curbing underage gambling in Australia. In an area where few checks and balances are in place, this should prove very helpful to retailers and parents alike.

Melbourne TAB Trial Prompts Full Implementation

According to Business Insider Australia and other agencies, Tabcorp is about ready to implement AI video surveillance at all live TAB retailers starting the middle of 2020. The announcement came after a trial of the technology at three Melbourne TAB shops.

According to Executive General Manager of Wagering Andy Wright, the company was happy with the results of the trial and will roll out the technology to all of their 400 retail locations by the Summer.

According to Wright, “In retail, you have the anonymity of cash and there’s a heightened level of risk around that. Ensuring full compliance with laws and our license obligations is vital to our business and this is one measure that will support that.”

Tabcorp Facial Recognition

This technology has became necessary due to the easy of some teens accessing TAB gaming. In live retails settings, gamblers do not have to create accounts, verify their identity, or pay with credit cards as they have to at online casinos in Australia. While retailers have a legal obligation to watch out for underage players, some choose not to press the issue with youth that look older. Also, there is the potential for some to use fake IDs or bring in those of legal age to purchase tickets for them.

The new technology will scan the faces of everyone that walks into a TAB location and run a facial analysis. If the program deems that the person is under 25, then a customer service agent gets an alert. They must then approach the person to verify their age.

Players Don’t Seem to Mind Monitoring

During the Melbourne trial, signs were displayed to alert players that video monitoring was being conducted. According to Wright, “We were a little bit concerned that it might be to the detriment of turnover, but this didn’t happen. Cameras are common in retail environments, banks, service stations, ATMs, pubs and clubs and customers rarely complain. We’ve just got to make sure that whatever we do doesn’t compromise our privacy obligations.”

Video surveillance will be rolled out at standard TAB retailers but will not be rolled out to terminals located in pubs or clubs. For retailers that allow minors to bet, there can be huge fines. In NSW, the fine is $5,500 while the fine in Victoria is $19,800.

During the initial trial, Tabcorp used three different vendors for their facial recognition software. During the full rollout, Tabcorp will use Eliiza for their AI and video monitoring. It is unknown what steps are involved in the initial process. However, Tabcorp is looking to streamline the process. In the future agents can be notified of potential violators via their iPad or other portable devices.

Parents and Retailers Can Rest Easier

As mentioned earlier, live retail TAB locations have very few checks and balances in place to combat teen gambling. The new AI technology will help to curb Tabcorp combat underage gambling at TAB establishments.

Gambling is only for those of legal age, but some youth try to find ways around existing laws. Fortunately, this technology will help to protect youth and will give parents extra piece of mind that TAB locations will not exploit their children.

We could potentially see this technology expanded in the future to help combat problem gambling. Facial recognition could be used to identify players on self-exclusion lists or those that have been banned from TAB locations. While some may complain against monitoring, the technology can provide substantial benefits for retailers while helping to protect players.