Rightlander - Information overload: automating compliance

Rightlander - Information overload: automating compliance

Thursday, August 9, 2018 Posted by Joseph Streeter
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Ian Sims emphasises how compliance demands are changing the affiliate landscape

Ian Sims, founder of Rightlander, outlines to TotallyGaming.com that operators are being crushed under the weight of the data they are gathering as regulators ramp up compliance demands.

Compliance is now a key focus for operators and suppliers offering iGaming products in markets around the world. In recent months, regulators have really ramped up the demands being placed on businesses when it comes to ensuring players can wager online in a safe and secure environment.

The latest turn of the screw came just days ago, with the UK Gambling Commission announcing that new rules would come into force on 31 October 2018 to punish operators it deems are deploying irresponsible advertising practices and tactics, and that are offering misleading bonuses and promotions to players.

In order to ensure they are playing by the rules, operators, suppliers and affiliates are having to gain a clear profile of each consumer they engage with. This in turn is causing them to gather unprecedented volumes of data, all of which needs to be segmented, processed, analysed, actioned, reported and stored.

This data helps to understand each player, and particularly their playing patters and behaviours. By obtaining this insight, operators can see in real-time when a player starts to display certain behaviours in line with problem gambling and can take the necessary actions to ensure they regain control or get the support they require.

What’s more, operators are also having to monitor and log the players they market to, how those players are marketed to, and what that marketing collateral contains. This includes any affiliates the operator – or indeed the supplier – may work with. Indeed, the relationship between betting brands and affiliates is under close scrutiny at present.

Regulators in the UK and beyond have made it clear that operators are ultimately responsible for the information affiliates publish on their behalf, which means the former must gather additional information on the latter. This includes brand mentions, promotions, and terms and conditions.

As a result, operators are amassing even more data and I would argue many are now at the point of information overload. In short, they have so much data they simply don’t have enough resources to effectively manage it. The risk, of course, is they become so tangled in red tape that players are no longer sufficiently protected.

There is a solution. Automation and artificial intelligence are being used by operators and suppliers to drive efficiency and improve product and service in areas such as customer support, game recommendations, trading, markets and odds, etc. Those looking to regain control of responsible gambling should look to extend its use to data, too.

This is certainly true when it comes to operators tightening up affiliate compliance. In the past, operators have had to manually scan affiliate websites for red flag issues. This information has then had to be logged, reported, and the affiliate contacted in order to fix the compliance violation. But now, tools such as Rightlander automate the process.

Our technology scans affiliate websites, simultaneously building a list of locations where an operator’s brand is mentioned or linked to while also searching for events and conditions defined by the operator. It also captures images and the content of anchor text used to link to the operator's brands and creates a variety of custom reports and alerts for the operator.

In addition, it also checks for the presence of any key terms and conditions next to a link on an affiliate website. This allows operators and their marketing departments to quickly and effectively spot compliance violation events, and work with affiliates to ensure they are changed as quickly as possible. Moreover, Rightlander now operates in multiple territories including UK, Sweden, Holland, USA and Australia ensuring that operators can stay complaint across geographies.  

Of course, this can be done manually but it would take so much longer, and, in all likelihood, some violation events would be missed. When you consider just how serious regulators are taking responsible gambling, in particular the way players are marketed to and the terms and conditions of bonuses, there is potential for operators to fall foul of the rules.

This is just one area in which operators can use automation to ensure they are 100% compliant with the rules and regulations in the markets in which they are active.

By letting the machines do much of the heavy lifting, operators, suppliers and affiliates can then deploy the human touch where necessary to maximise the value extracted from data. What’s more, when you consider that regulators are only going to ask more of operators and suppliers, automation really is the only way they can keep pace with rising demands.

Totally Gaming says: It’s hard to argue with Ian Sims, that when it comes to affiliates marketing, compliance is the foremost priority for operators in the current climate, therefore as the digital landscape evolves it’s key that affiliates utilise the latest technology to maximise compliance.
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