During Betting on Sports Europe, Paul Foster of Crucial Compliance participated on my blockchain technology panel to illuminate his company’s integration with nChain’s data time-stamping Kensei solution.
As a forward thinker, Foster is one of the first B2B gambling industry professionals to understand the unique powers of blockchain for keeping track of massive amounts of data.
“At Crucial Compliance where we’ve built a system called Crucial Player Protection, which actually is a behavioral monitoring system, which looks after the whole player experience from the moment you sign up through to the time you’re playing,” Foster shared on Hashing It Out.
“We monitor your behavior and whenever you change your behavior, then we know about it and we can then interact with the player…it’s all about keeping the player in the fun zone and not in the danger zone,” he said.
Foster credited Nick Hill of nChain as the professional who educated him on BSV blockchain tech and how nChain’s Kensei platform could alleviate some of the data integrity issues plaguing the gambling industry today.
“When I told [Hill] about the platform we built and about how it was key to storing all the data, but the problem we have was data integrity, all of a sudden he just went, ‘hold it…I think I think we’ve got the answer here,’” Foster shared.
“With the Kensei platform, we found something that was really, really positive. So we thought, let’s explore the opportunity,” Foster said.
Maintaining data integrity has ballooned into one of the gambling industry’s biggest pain points, especially with mergers and acquisitions plus the changing of platforms and providers that goes along with them. Foster explained that as a result, data is often compromised, which of course is a big problem in the eyes of the regulators.
“And whilst in the back end of Crucial Compliance Player Protection we have that data, the data is only as good as where it’s hosted, which is normally with the operator. There is a risk that at some stage that data will get corrupted,” revealed Foster.
“If we put the data onto the blockchain, then we create an irrefutable log of all that data. It’s time stamped. It’s correct. And at any time, you can check that against the system to make sure that the system has integrity,” he added.
One of the most obvious benefits of using the immutable blockchain ledger to manage data is the “insurance policy” it provides against being fined by regulators. For example, if an operator does not have proof that they took all the steps necessary to keep a customer playing responsibly, they could be faced with huge fines, even soaring into the millions as Foster revealed from personal experience.
“A government commission did an investigation into us, and unfortunately we could not prove that we had done the right thing and ended up with a 4.8 million pound fine for not having the correct data,” he said.
While platforms such as Kensei have been built to help with regulations and compliance, the regulators themselves are still a bit weary of anything “blockchain.” However, once regulators are educated on the powers of the immutable ledger and the good it can do for the gambling industry and beyond, they are pleasantly surprised and open to the new technology.
“It typically depends [on] who I’m talking to and how educated [the regulators] are, because as you know, you talk about blockchain, the first thing everybody thinks about is crypto,” pointed out Foster.
“What you really in reality have is timestamped data. When we explain that, then they go, ‘okay, but how will that help us?’ And when we then start talking about the Kensei platform, we’re talking about access to the data,” he said.
“Then all of a sudden they get very excited and go, ‘so in reality, we could independently verify that data that you’ve got in your system?’ And we go, ‘yes, that’s the whole idea of it.’ So they get quite excited,” Foster confirmed.
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