Crucial Compliance

W2 and Crucial Compliance: Simplifying the compliance burden for igaming operators

Writing a shared account for SBC News, Warren Russell from W2 and Crucial Compliance’s Paul Foster explain why the move towards tighter enforcement for global regulators leaves operators needing to strengthen their compliance efforts today.

Global regulators continue to tighten regulations to ensure licence holders meet the highest possible safer gambling and AML standards.

As part of these efforts, regulators from across the globe are actively moving towards enforcement with many set to adopt a similar approach to that of the Great Britain and Swedish Gambling Commissions. This means all licensed operators – from Britain to Brazil – will need to take steps to strengthen compliance now and build on this over the coming months. 

This will undoubtedly present challenges for operators and especially smaller businesses with less resources than their tier one rivals. Most big-name operators have compliance departments manned by 15+ people plus wider business analytical support using a range of platforms, data feeds and so on which allows easier adoption of stringent player protection principles. Their deep pockets may not reduce the complexity but it certainly helps.

Regulation makes compliance complex and costly and, in some cases, inconsistent, but it doesn’t need to be this way. Smaller operators can leverage best-in-class technologies to drive their compliance efforts without the need for several separate systems and a large number of staff to meet compliance requirements. 

W2 provides the global data points and innovative technology to deliver ground breaking customer insight producing meaningful outcomes when it comes to a customer’s identity and affordability ratings. These data points are hugely valuable but only go so far. That is where the collaboration with Crucial compliance steps in.

Crucial Compliance Player Protection (CPP) has been designed as a single, scalable solution for compliance and business management. The ultimate aim is to improve the accuracy of review for AML and responsible gambling to better protect at-risk players. 

From a customer perspective, it is built to guide them through their own playing habits and keep them playing in the “entertainment zone”. It is all about frictionless protection.

This is achieved by using harm markers – Crucial have 174 in total – combined with advanced algorithms and machine learning calibrated to individual operators. 

These models are based on individual player levels, segmented by product, country, vertical, channel and more – which is key for AML. This allows operators to compare player behaviour not only with others, but against their own benchmarked behaviour over time, which is key to minimising gambling related harm. 

This improves output and efficiency of the compliance team – which can be significantly reduced in number due to the power of the technology – by giving operators the platform and tools to be able to focus on product and on a country-by-country basis. 

It is the only compliance platform that has been built by compliance professionals from the ground up for the specific purpose of compliance and with a focus on holistic player protection and powered by the real time data feeds from W2’s award winning platform. The tool is also supported by an experienced training, data and analytical team that allows operators to maximise the platform’s full potential and accuracy during and post implementation.

The platform allows operators to track harm markers and interact with the player about their playing habits. This is not to tell them what to do, rather to educate them about how to better stay in control of their play and utilise the tools available to help them do this. 

This in turn means that players can continue to enjoy online gambling without experiencing harm which ultimately means them having to utilise self-exclusion. Not only that, but CPP monitors, tracks and stores all actions and interactions taken by the operator at that point in time.

This is important when it comes to providing evidence to the regulator that they took the necessary actions to mitigate the player developing a gambling problem. Traditionally, this is tough as the evidence needs to be pulled from several departments, each using different platforms and data. 

With the W2 and CPP partnership, all activity is verified, monitored, tracked, fully audited and stored in real-time, and can be recalled with the click of a button. It even provides graphs that show harm markers 30 days before and 30 days after an interaction has been made and whether it worked or not.

While operators cannot change a player’s nature and desire to gamble, they can change their behaviour and when carrying out responsible gambling audits, regulators such as the GBGC expect operators to be able to evidence what they have done in this regard. 

Operators might not have to meet these standards right now, but regulators have this as a number on priority so it will become central to the success of their businesses during the coming months and years. And for smaller operators and start-ups, it is crucial to get compliance right from the get-go. 

Compliance can be complex and costly, but CCP and W2 have joined together to support a single solution that is scalable, fully audited and tailored to the unique requirements of each operator we work with.

That it only requires a small team to operate is what makes it ideal for tier two and tier three operators. The experience brought from both teams reduces both the complexity and the cost from what is undoubtedly the key area of any businesses operation for the foreseeable future.

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