Veikkaus wants compulsory identification for most gaming activities

Olli Sarekoski

Finnish monopoly gambling operator Veikkaus has called for a revision of the country’s Lotteries Act to make sure all gaming should be made subject to compulsory identification, excluding scratchcards and the casinos.

The company made its call after revealing that it is to revamp its operations to put more emphasis on responsible gambling.

Veikkaus’ President and CEO Olli Sarekoski told a media conference yesterday: “On the basis of the principles, we have taken and will continue to take several measures, through which Veikkaus will build an even safer and more responsible gaming environment for its customers.”

Some of the measures being introduced include reducing marketing and make it easier for the players to quit gaming. This includes a decision to bring forward the adoption of compulsory identification for play on slot machines.

Sarekoski explained: “Veikkaus will bring forward compulsory identification by a year from what was laid down by Parliament last spring. In other words, compulsory identification will already be introduced in January 2021.

“Compulsory identification will enable the players to set a permanent ban on their slot machine gaming. It also enables us to prevent underage gaming. These measures will also have a significant impact on the total number of slot machines.”

Identified players will have access to effective tools for gaming control. In addition, identified gaming helps the fight against crime and improve consumer protection. According to the firm’s estimates, compulsory identification on slot machines will lead to an annual decrease of ca. EUR 100–150 million in turnover.

Veikkaus has also adopted new critical recommendations on marketing by Tekir, an external organization tasked to draft a report on Veikkaus. 

Nora Vähävirta, Veikkaus’ COO, said: “We have laid down new guidelines for Veikkaus’ responsible marketing. They affect the volume, content, supervision, and processes of marketing. We are about to create a new corporate culture for marketing.”