Gaming Machines In The UK Will Incorporate A ‘Cooling Off’ Feature

The Betting and Gaming Council (BGC) commitment to safer gambling was extended this week as they introduce a new ‘cooling off’ feature to gambling machines in betting shops, in a bid to raise awareness to punters who are presenting problem gambling habits.

Anonymous Player Awareness System

The new feature called the ‘Anonymous Player Awareness System’ (APAS) is a real-time algorithm identifying player behaviour, which may become harmful. When this behaviour is present an alert will flash on screen, breaking play, staff will also be alerted allowing them to speak to the player.The Betting and Gaming Council have been developing APAS for over two years, trialing and evaluating the algorithm. Markers have been studied by academic researches, which are most likely to be associated with risk of harm to players.

Safer Gambling Tools

The new feature was revealed during Responsible Gambling Week, supplementing the already existing safer gambling tools on gaming machines, like setting up spending limits and safer gambling messaging appearing on screen.Last week, the BGC announced further commitment by including £10 million funding to provide a national education programme for children and teenagers. Charities GamCare and YGAM developed the programme and will deliver it over a four-year period, promoting the risks of excessive gambling, the risks involved with gambling and responsible gambling.Chief executive of BGC, Wes Himes said, “ I can see this as an opportunity to champion the highest standards and share best practice on safe betting and gaming, and we hope these new measures are a sign of intent. “ I’m convinced this approach can help restore public trust, and I look forward to working on safer betting and gaming initiatives across our industry.”

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