Zeal Network to implement AI identity verification

Zeal Network says the system will ensure players use their real identities.
Zeal Network says the system will ensure players use their real identities.

The German lottery provider will use technology from online security firm Nect.

Germany.- The German lottery operator Zeal Network is to implement artificial intelligence (AI) identity verification technology to better protect minors from gambling harm. It reached a deal to use technology from online security provider Nect.

Nect Ident allows players to identify themselves via an app using an ID document and a selfie video. The technology compares faces and documents and can detect digital manipulation. Zeal said the move will help it to ensure that people using its online gambling services are over age and use their real identities to create accounts.

Zeal chief executive Helmut Becker said: “As a provider of online lotteries, youth protection is central and omnipresent for us. That’s why we place the highest value on using innovative technologies that make the registration process secure and transparent for both sides. 

“By using Nect Ident, we will be able to even better ensure that players who register for our online offering really do meet the regulatory requirements for playing the lottery.”

Nect chief executive Benny Bennet Jürgens added: “Youth control should be as simple and at the same time as safe as somehow possible. Both sides benefit from AI-based identification: users can identify themselves independently and quickly, and companies can be sure that their new customers are really the people they claim to be.”

Gaming industry blasts order to close betting shops in Bremen

The German Sports Betting Association has blasted an order issued by the city-state of Bremen to close all betting shops. Authorities in the city said it was issuing the order on the grounds that it was not convinced that betting operators were not fronts for money laundering.

The city has rejected applications from 32 high-street betting shops that had applied for new licences under Germany’s new interstate gambling treaty, which came into effect last July. It said that some operators failed to provide written evidence of how they had secured the startup funds for their businesses, while one was located too close to a school. Operators have until August 5 to appeal.

Meanwhile, Germany’s new federal gambling regulator Glücksspielbehörde (GGL) has proposed a system under which it would ask internet service providers (ISPs) to voluntarily block unlicensed gambling websites. The proposal comes after the GGL took its first enforcement action last week by ordering IP blocks against Lottoland.

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