Australia to Use Facial Recognition to Stop Problem Gambling

This story was published more than 1 year ago.

Gambling sites in New South Wales are going to be introducing a high-tech, extra creepy way to keep problem gamblers at bay by using facial recognition software and security cameras next year.

The technology will see cameras recording the faces of visitors when they pop into a pub or gambling club and use facial recognition software to cross-identify patrons who've signed up for a voluntary self-exclusion list. If the technology finds a gambler that's on the self-exclusion list, staff at the venue are alerted and an intervention with the player will take place. The player will not be permitted to gamble, and support services will be offered, if needed.

The program is a collaboration between ClubsNSW and Australian Hotels Association and is currently live in about 100 locations throughout the state. The same technology is in place in the state of South Australia, where it is being used in 300 spots with gambling machines.

Regarding the accuracy of the technology AHA director of liquor and policing John Green said, "People can change over time and using facial recognition technology just makes sure we've got the best chance of identifying those people as they enter.

"We've tested how it operates and quite frankly it can identify people wearing masks, wearing glasses and trying to avoid detection."

While some think the scheme will help gamblers, others think its an attempt by the gaming industry to avoid the introduction of a cashless gambling cards, which would require players to load funds onto a card, which could then be tracked for problem betting. Australia Greens MP Cate Faehrmann is one of those people, noting: "I think it's a bit of a sop to the very powerful ClubsNSW body and to the gambling lobby. This is an attempt, clearly potentially a successful attempt, by ClubsNSW to avoid a cashless gambling card.

"This is the industry's way of avoiding having to introduce a suite of measures that would reduce gambling harm across the state."

Casino Listings News will follow this story like Chris Hansen follows online creepers, and will update readers as appropriate.

Source: Australian Broadcasting Corporation

About the author

Kingston Li // Asia Correspondent
Kingston Li
Kingston is a big fan of Baccarat and Texas Hold'em Poker and has tested his skills in tournaments around Asia and the world. He covers the latest gambling news from Asia for Casino Listings. In his spare time, Kingston enjoys hiking, video gaming, and playing disc golf.
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auCL-Ed
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27 October 2022 - 10:35pm
#1

Not even 2 days after saying that the facial recognition was only going to be used for identifying excluded gamblers (amid much scepticism from anyone with a functioning brain), now ClubsNSW are saying that they will also be using it to identify and eject people who may have been drunk, disorderly, violent, or who may have smoked in a non-smoking area.

Gee who could possibly have foreseen that coming?

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usbarbadosslim93
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28 October 2022 - 1:23pm
#2

Yeah, nothing creepy about that. Only the "right" people will be allowed access, so that's reassuring... 🙄🙄😐

auMatthew
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29 October 2022 - 10:25pm
#3

Don't worry, I'm sure the surveillance state is keeping our private biometric data totally safe and secure! 🙄

zaLambino
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4 November 2022 - 11:17am
#4

For 1st world countries I think this is probably a good thing but sadly if something like this had to start in South Africa it would either be hacked constantly or our very own government would sell all Identities online or or on he dark web , Most all our state run IT services are still using Windows XP and all the funding they get to upgrade just gets stolen

auCL-Ed
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7 November 2022 - 6:23am
#5

For non Australians, that this comes with the context of several major Australian businesses including Optus (telecommunications provider) and Medibank Private (health insurer) revealing that they have been recently hacked and had all customer data compromised. There is no way I would trust clubs to have the competence to keep this kind of data secure and private, even if they wanted to.

Matthew

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usbarbadosslim93
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7 November 2022 - 6:49pm
#6

Oh my. Yeah it's hard to trust anyone with your data these days, let alone someone that's taking facial scans, which can be cross-checked with other relevant data. Hopefully it's not adopted for the long-term.