Kindred’s award winning proprietary Player Safety Early Detection System (PS-EDS) is at the heart of our responsible gaming approach. Using a risk-based approach, the software detects early signs of problem gambling using indicators based on empirical studies, and allows us to monitor, support and protect players.
Online gambling and betting originated from Europe and China hundreds of years ago and still today remains a popular form of entertainment. While the vast majority of people enjoy gambling there are aspects which require attention from us as a gambling company, such as responsible gaming, fraud prevention and online security. Helping our customers stay in control by providing a safe and secure online environment as well as preventing fraud, contributes to our aim of offering the best customer experience.
For Kindred, responsibility takes a number of forms, of which primary prevention is the most important. All of our operations are designed to restrict, as much as possible, problems arising such as addiction and under-age gambling, thus safeguarding the integrity and security of our customers and our operations.
Our focus areas
As a digital driven company we have the ability to create a digital fingerprint of our customers’ behaviours on our platform, allowing us to detect, monitor and follow-up on problematic gambling activities which enhances our ability to create a safe gambling environment. We also share information on anti-money laundering, match fixing and fraud issues.
Part of this process is knowing your customer, which we ensure through the registration and withdrawal process: including ID verification and age restrictions, security questions, document screening and other identification tools.
Our responsible gambling approach rests on two main pillars – harm prevention and harm minimization. Prevention activities include tools and campaigns focused on raising awareness about gambling and problem gambling across all markets. Responsible gambling tools can be used in order to diminish the level of gambling, and help regulating one’s activity. These tools include:
Information about responsible gambling
Information about responsible gambling is available and visible on a dedicated responsible gambling page on all our websites. Customers can view tools that he/she can use, but also links where they can seek help.
A self-evaluation questionnaire
Based on the PGSI, the self-evaluation questionnaire that we offer is laid out in order to help customers determine if they have a problem. This questionnaire is anonymous and no answers are recorded, so customers can feel comfortable in answering as honestly as possible.
Deciding up front how much you as a customer are prepared to lose or deposit will always help in avoiding gambling too often. This is why we encourage customers to use the deposit limit. The deposit limit system is fully automatic and if you try to go above your deposit limit, the system will alert you. Furthermore, if you make your deposit limit less restrictive or if you try to remove the deposit limit, you will have a 7 day mandatory break to help you be precautious. If during this 7 days period you decide that it would be better to go to the initial limit, you can do this just by clicking ‘Undo change.’
Product blocking tools
Some players prefer certain products over others. It can be that when playing casino you find it difficult to stop. In order to help customers manage this, customers have the option to remove access to certain product groups. This is also offered in time periods so customers can choose how long they would like the break.
To prevent gambling sessions from going on too long we offer session limits. This will not stop customers from gambling, but after an hour of gambling the customer will get a pop-up message asking them whether they would like to continue or not.
Cooling off periods
Having a break from gambling from time to time is good. That is why we offer cooling off periods. These periods range from 1 day to 3 months, and during this period customers cannot access their accounts (depending on which brand you chose to have a break).
If a customer is experiencing a problem with his/her gambling we recommend to self-exclude for a period of time. Currently the longest self-exclusion period we offer on most of our markets is 6 months, but we do understand that certain people might need to take a longer break. We have trained responsible gambing experts working in customer service, to support our customers in remaining in control of their gambling activities.
Once a customer has self-excluded this decision cannot be revoked.
In addition to this Kindred has developed its own award winning proprietary Player Safety Early Detection System (PS-EDS). The system uses a risk-based approach, the software detects early signs of problem gambling using indicators based on empirical studies, and allows us to monitor, support and protect players.
All of Kindred’s employees undergo mandatory responsible gambling training. Responsible gambling training varies on different levels due to the diversity of the business. Customer-facing employees also get the opportunity of discussing best possible responsible gaming approaches with psychotherapists, recovered problem gamblers and experts from treatment centres.
Money laundering encompasses the engagement in financial transactions to conceal the identity, the source or the destination of illegally gained money. This can occur through three phases, namely placement, layering and integration. Within Kindred we are highly dedicated in preventing these issues and we do this through a group wide AML policy and mandatory training for each employee who works in Unibet. We also have a specifically designated MLRO who oversees all suspicious reports. Kindred has been adhering to the 4th Money Laundering directive and has dedicated systems to detect any irregularities and/or suspicions of fraudulent transactions. This is further enforced with a team of dedicated experts who are all trained through external tertiary education on the topic.
Being a multi-brand and international group, Kindred’s defence against fraud needs to be as diverse and adaptive as the fraud itself.
Kindred’s Player Safety Department consists of numerous nationalities, backgrounds and experiences which collectively add to the expertise brought forward to combat these fraudulent trends whilst keeping in mind that genuine clients’ gambling experiences should not be hampered in any way.
Innovative high end software coupled with an ever growing team across numerous countries such as Malta, Australia, Gibraltar, Sweden and the UK ensure that players’ trust is kept at an absolute maximum while safeguarding the integrity of the entire network and fulfilling the necessary duty of combating online financial crime.
The Player Safety Department is made up of a number of teams – the fraud prevention teams further split up to focus on the general lifecycle of a player; from registration followed by deposit, through play and withdrawal and retained back to deposit. The agents working on these teams are supported by a team dedicated to combatting promotional abuse, who also check registrations and constantly scan for any form of abuse that could originate from marketing or promotional campaigns.
In-house built back offices and adaptive software ensure that the agents themselves are the key drivers to updates in the systems. Findings from daily checks done by these agents can be input into the system to add to the ever increasing database of known types of fraud and patterns. These in turn are used in automation to feed off the agents’ experiences and help deal with situations presented in the future without human input, based on identified fraud and solutions in the past.
This type of innovative software has proven to provide Kindred’s Player Safety Department with the basis to be at the very forefront on integrity in order to build customer trust, whilst ensuring that other areas are not limited in their options to offer best-in-class products – knowing that a stalwart line of defence is backing them up all the way. Device fingerprinting, IP tracking, weighted rulesets, customer classification and priority level assignment are just a few of the cutting edge implementations in place to make sure our gambling environment is as safe as it can be.
Throughout client vetting, the agents involved need to make sure that all licence requirements are met for the different Jurisdictions covered. Being multinational, Kindred is faced with strict regulations which differ from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.
Once again, the adaptive systems in place take these into account and assist the agents in their daily work; not allowing withdrawals to be paid unless legal requirements are met, automatically asking customer due diligence when needed and automatically classifying customers according to their country of residence are some examples.
Over and above, the teams in the Player Safety Department undergo numerous courses throughout the year including a high level external AML course to ensure continuous compliance across the board.
Kindred is devoted to full compliance with all the applicable laws and regulations regarding “Know Your Customer” (KYC) requirements, including customer age and identity verification. Customer verification is used to ensure that our customers provide information that is associated with the identity of a real person. During the verification process, we verify and authenticate our customers with e-authentication or eID solutions. Another option is to verify identity information against authoritative sources such as a credit bureau or government data – this process is called e-verification. Finally, in order to verify the customer, we validate the authenticity of physical identity documents such as government issued ID card, driving license or passport, called ID verification.
The documents verification process can be supported by Optical Character Recognition (OCR) technology that extracts and verifies all the key information contained in the identity document – the whole process takes only a few minutes. If a more comprehensive verification is required for complex cases, the document can be referred to a team of document analysts, trained to border standards for human expert review. Customer identity verification is a part of the KYC process, which is key to identifying risk and potential suspicious activity and also mitigating various risks, including underage signups, multi account abuse, identity theft, money laundering and other fraudulent activity.
Kindred is constantly faced with the complex challenge of efficiently verifying and validating the user identity, whilst also enabling secure access to the player accounts. We are moving Kindred’s brands into the digital sphere with a keen focus on digital identity verification and authentication, innovative and smart technologies that lowers their requirement to verify physical documents.
As part of our Player Safety strategy we aim to implement trusted authentication models such as Swedish BankID, Danish NemID or TUPAS in Finland. This reduces customer frictions and operational workload, resulting in an effortless, easier and more enjoyable customer experience and at the same time can result in seamless, more secure way of accessing the site to further maximise the player safety.
Player Safety in brief
In general, Kindred’s Responsible Gaming policy is designed:
(i) to apply to all our customers, not just problem gamblers; and
(ii) to increase customer satisfaction and retention as part of household entertainment.
To implement its Responsible Gaming vision, Kindred undertakes to:
- Educate and provide information to all staff in Responsible Gaming strategies and procedures;
- Have Responsible Gaming as an integrated part of the daily operations in everything, from customer service to marketing and technical solutions;
- Be committed in being up-to-date with research and public awareness regarding responsible gaming, and contribute to further research in this area;
- Evaluate, and improve where needed, its policies and procedures from a holistic stance, by employing a qualified Behavioural Psychologist-appointed Responsible Gaming Manager;
- Monitor vigilantly all transactions and have a zero-tolerance policy against fraud, including under-age gambling;
- Advertise responsibly;
- Use the opportunities offered by new technologies to optimise consumer
protection, e.g., by implementing third-party ID verification tools or relying on objective recorded data instead of self-reported data;
- Have tools available on the site to enable customers to set their own gaming limits in function of time, budget and/or products;
- Provide Responsible Gaming information on the website, including self-assessment tools and links on where to turn for further specialised assistance; and
- Engage with external specialists and have processes audited and improve cooperation with suppliers such as G4, the Global Gambling Guidance Group (G4), Adictel and eCOGRA, ecommerce and Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance.