Self-exclusions in Macau grow 26 pct

During the first half of the year, self-exclusions in Macau have shot up 26% as the city received a total of 291 requests from gamblers.

Macau.- Self-exclusion is one of the key tools to control problem gambling worldwide. In Macau, such requests have gone up 26% during the first half of the year, the city authorities reported.

Between January and June, 252 gamblers filed self-exclusion requests in Macau, up from 200 in 2018. 

Total exclusion requests, on the other hand, were up to 291, (up from 233). Third parties (e.g. family members) filed 39 documents, the Gaming Inspection and Coordination Bureau (DICJ) said. 

Most requests came during the first quarter (149), while the DICJ got an aggregate of 142 bids in the second. 22 of those applications came via third parties.

So far, requests in 2019 amount to almost 60% of those filed in 2018. Last year, the government received a total of 490 exclusion requests in Macau.

Facial recognition

As technology advances, the gaming industry continues to take advantage of new systems and gadgets to improve itself. That’s why some Macau casinos are already testing facial recognition systems inside their venues.

According to the DICJ, some operators are already partially installing systems within their premises. 

“Currently, two or three casinos are testing,” DICJ director Paulo Martins Chan. “During their operations, they have to strictly obey the personal data protection law,” he added.

“I think it will take time for the parties involved to comprehend the personal data protection law. If possible, at the preliminary stage, [the system] will be used on a small scale in a few places. Then we will be able to see how the laws can oversee the use of the equipment.”

According to Chan, Macau casinos facial recognition systems will only be used for security purposes. However, they could eventually work to detect excluded players.

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