Numerous challenges exist for online incumbents when it comes to player verification but how can these issues by overcome? And are these unique to gambling or spread across multiple industries?

Ben Keirle, CEO of 1account, providers of real-time technology platform that enables validation of KYC data, addresses this and makes a series of recommendations for operators.

CasinoBeats: What are the biggest challenges for online gambling brands when it comes to verifying players?

Ben Keirle: The sources of data used to validate customers. At present, around 80 per cent of customers are successfully verified through sources such as the electoral roll and credit searches. This is fine, but causes issues when players are not on electoral rolls or have not been resident in the country long enough to apply for credit cards. 

Students are notoriously difficult to KYC, for example. A student is unlikely to be registered to vote, will be living at an address that is not their home address and if they do have a credit card, it will be registered to their parent’s house and not their student accommodation. 

The greatest challenge therefore is accessing additional data to effectively KYC the player, both in terms of responsible gambling and in ensuring operators maximise the ROI on advertising and CPA expenses.  

CB: Are these challenges unique to online gambling? What have you learned from other markets that could be applied to gambling?

BK: The challenges are similar in all age-restricted verticals. In fact, we have learned that a large number of customers that need KYC checking and age verifying traverse several sectors. For example, those that purchase alcohol or vaping products online are also more likely to bet and gamble online. 

This has led us to create the world’s largest database of age-verified consumers that we allow our partners to access in order to verify their customers. The initial verification process can be tough and expensive for the reasons mentioned above, but once verified and in the database it makes verifying them elsewhere so much easier. 

CB: How is increasing regulation impacting player verification?

BK: Players are being put off by lengthy and time-consuming identity validation processes. This is demonstrated by the fact that some operators have experienced a 30 per cent drop in new players being able to deposit and play immediately. This follows tougher regulations requiring real-time verification as opposed to the 72 hour window operators previously had.

When operators had three days to go through validation and allow players to gamble during that time, it was fine. But now if operators only get 70-80 per cent AV success ratios in real-time they then have to ask the player to provide ID manually or through other solutions. These solutions are effective but they are conversion killers.

CB: How can these challenges be overcome?

BK: Operators need to ask themselves two questions – how can I improve the automated aspect of the player onboarding validation success ratio and what is the most seamless way to verify players that can’t be approved using the initial automated check. 

In this regard, I have five recommendations for operators to help answer these questions and implement the right technologies and processes. 

  • Be prescriptive with how you want user data entered – be clear about the data you require from players and how that data needs to be entered.
  • Implement automated postcode finders – addresses often fail to match simply because the player has entered the information incorrectly. Use an address and postcode finder to overcome this.
  • Partner with a provider that has a huge range of data sources – it is better to check data sources before asking players to submit their own documents.
  • Have a secondary automated AV provider – some providers have data sources that others do not. By working with more than one provider, if your first attempt fails you can cascade to the next and so on.
  • Use a company that also does ID verification – third parties often offer more smooth and seamless ways of having players submit their ID documents, which are then checked automatically. 

By considering these points and implementing some of the suggestions made, operators will be able to vastly improve the percentage of players verified. This means reducing KYC costs and increasing their returns on marketing, acquisition and player onboarding.