South Australia Casinos Deploy Facial Recognition

80% of gaming venues in South Australia have facial recognition technology

Casinos and gaming room owners in South Australia are among the first to deploy facial recognition software. The technology is in place to better identify players suspended from gambling.

Some 80% of South Australia gaming venues have facial recognition software installed. Vix Vizion and Cradlepoint collaborated to deliver the solution. Gaming venues in South Australia are required to feature a facial recognition system if they operate 30 or more gaming terminals. This has been the case since December 3, 2020 when new reforms came into force.

The South Australian Consumer and Business Services (CBS) explained the thinking behind the state-of-the-art technology.

“Facial recognition technology will further support and assist license venues meet their responsibilities of identifying barred patrons by alerting gaming venue staff when a barred patron is detected entering the gaming room.”

South Australia Government Approves Eight Systems

South Australia gaming venues have a choice of eight government-approved facial recognition systems. All eight are slightly different, although the principle is the same for them all.

Cameras capture the patron’s image and cross-references it with a government-managed database. This is different from when the system first launched because venues used hard copy photographs.

Cradlepoint and Vix Vizion’s system is state-of-the-art. It boasts of a detection rate of over 90%. Furthermore, it picks up on changes to a person’s appearance, such as growing a beard, wearing glasses, or cutting their hair short.

The system sends an alert to the venue’s security staff when it detects a banned customer.

Cradlepoint APAC managing director Gavin Wilson applauded the South Australian government for implementing its software.

“We applaud the South Australia government’s initiative to use technology to protect communities. As technology infuses every aspect of our lives, including gaming, it’s important to leverage technology to help ensure the safety and support of people in need.”

Vix Vizion plans to roll our similar technology in gaming venues across other Australian states.

There are numerous other uses for the facial recognition software, including monitoring gamblers. Venues currently use the tech to prevent problem gamblers from entering the premises. Helping venues adhere to a solid responsible gaming program is another use for this excellent technology.

Facial Recognition Would be Handy For Crown Resorts

Crown Resorts is under fire for a complete lack of responsible gambling processes in its Melbourne casino. An inquiry into its suitability to keep its Melbourne license heard Crown employs only 12 responsibly gaming specialists despite seeing up to 64,000 patrons visit per day. The situation was worse until Crown employed more staff.

The same inquiry heard Crown Melbourne allowed a patron to gamble for 34 hours straight before forcing them to take a break. The unnamed VIP embarked on a 34-hour gambling spree some time in 2019.

“The system is set up to make it quite possible that someone could gamble for hours on end and not be approached by any staff.”

Crown argued its carded players, who the casino electronically tracks, receive an alert after gambling for 12, 15, and 17 hours. Introducing a 12-hour cap on playing in any 24 hour period is one measure Crown is implementing.

Facial recognition tech, such as that deployed in South Australia, could flag customers playing for prolonged periods.

The tech, when combined with a cashless system, helps prevent money laundering. Money laundering is common in Australian casinos. Organised crime syndicates gamble with their “dirty” money before withdrawing untraceable funds from the casino. Making it impossible for pokies and gaming table to accept cash almost eradicate a money laundering issue. Furthermore, criminals are less likely to attempt using the casino for illegal activity if they know the government captures their image and references it to a central database.

The Australian government is considering using the technology for online gambling, preventing underage gamblers.