Veikkaus is the only state-run betting agency in Finland that’s holding a monopoly in the country. It has announced that users of slot machines would have to authenticate their identity before playing in the near future. In other words, slot machines will require an authentication process. This, however, doesn’t apply for the national lottery Lotto.
This decision was brought after a study conducted by the National Institute for Health and Welfare THL which revealed that the method helps reduce the negative effects of gambling. According to a survey commissioned by the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health, problem gambling and gambling addiction have become more severe over the past several years.
Nowadays, there are slot machines everywhere across the country. You can find them in supermarkets, gas stations, gaming kiosks, and other public places, which makes gambling part of everyday life for Finns. For example, you can see a Finn trying their luck with the coin that the cashier at a tilt has just handed them over as a change. This is rather unordinary in other countries, where slot machines are situated only in casinos, bars, and restaurants, but not in Finland. Also, slot games are becoming more popular online among other types of casino games. For example, Сasumo casino provides players with a huge variety of slot games all genres.
According to the report, changes will affect around 18,000 slot games until 2023. Some slot machines will require identification from players before they can actually start playing the game. Since machines are restocked, newer installation of games will require people to provide identity first.
It is estimated that the installation of the identification process of slot machines will cost from 50 million to 100 million Euros. However, it’s still unclear when exactly will the upgrade take place, says Pekka IImivalta, the Veikkaus Head of Corporate Responsibility.
IImivalta says that the details of the change in slot machines are still being considered. He also says that it’s still unclear whether the authentication process will affect all types of gambling available and all games in Finland. However, the national lottery, the Lotto, won’t be affected. According to experts, the Lotto is one of the least harmful games of Veikkaus.
The planned restraint will prevent tourists from using slot machines in Finland, as Veikkaus can only open an account for Finns and people permanently living in the country. Still, the machines are expected to stay playable without a gaming account in the casinos and gambling halls of Veikkaus.
Right now, most of the Veikkaus’ slot machines can be accessed via a Veikkaus card. However, the authentication process still doesn’t include gaming restrictions. The Veikkaus card can only allow people to follow gaming activity online after they log in.
A report from the daily Helsingin Sanomat says that Veikkaus plans to introduce machines which can only be used after a player identifies themselves in places like supermarkets.
Recently, there has been an initiative to reduce gambling in Finland through a public campaign. Some Finns asked for the removal of video gambling machines from grocery stores and gas stations. A month ago, they gathered 7,400 signatures supporting the measure, and that number is still rising.