Finnish gambling monopoly Veikkaus is set to introduce a feature that will allow its customers to limit their losses across its slot machine estate from September.
The new feature is the latest in a host of measures rolled out by the betting agency as part of a corporate social responsibility program it launched a few years ago after public outcry that it was not doing enough to protect its players from gambling-related harm.
Veikkaus is the only entity in Finland permitted to conduct gaming and sports betting activities. The company operates thousands of slot machines at its gaming arcades across the country as well as at stores, restaurants, kiosks, and service stations.
The company plans to begin installing the loss limit feature across its slot machine estate from September. It will enable players to place a cap on the amount of money they can lose on the gaming devices over a given period of time.
The Finnish Ministry of the Interior has previously set a maximum loss limit of €500 per day and €2,000 per month. However, Veikkaus Communications Manager Pipsa Öhman has said that their idea is to allow players themselves to set their own loss limits.
The introduction of this new feature aims to help Veikkaus reduce gambling-related harm.
Mandatory ID Verification
Early this year, Veikkaus started implementing mandatory identification verification controls across its network of slot machines. The mandatory ID verification was supposed to be introduced from 2023 under Finland’s recently amended Lotteries Act, but the company committed to rolling it out two years earlier, following pressure that it should strengthen its responsible gambling policies.
The ID verification controls require all slot machine players to identify themselves every time they want to play with a special Veikkaus-issued ID card.
The gambling company said at the time that these controls would help it build a safer gaming environment and look after problem gamblers and players showing early signs of gambling-related problems.
With the mandatory ID verification and the new loss limit feature, the slot machines will “know how to connect the player and the loss limits can be followed as players can no longer play anonymously.” Ms. Öhman has explained. She further noted they expect their recent reforms to have a “significant impact on reducing problem gambling.”
As part of its responsible gambling efforts, Veikkaus has also recently reduced significantly the number of its slot machines across Finland. The company had originally planned to cut its devices by 3,500 in 2020, but eventually reduced their number by 8,000 by the end of that year to ring into 2021 with 10,500 machines.
Source: Veikkaus slot machines to include loss limiting feature, Yle, August 19, 2021