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Barred: How Facial Recognition Technology Has Improved to Keep Casinos Secure

Soren Frederiksen

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September 4, 2019

Rapid advancements in facial recognition (FR) technology in recent years have resulted in mature solutions that are finally capable of providing the results that end users need and expect. While the technology has come a long way since its inception decades ago, many have yet to adopt an effective and efficient solution within their security and surveillance operations. Below, we discuss the impact of FR in the gaming industry, highlighting just how beneficial it will be for casinos in the U.S. and Canada due to its technical progression in recent years.

How Are Casinos Using Facial Recognition?

FR technology is an excellent resource for those in the gaming industry. It is particularly helpful for security and surveillance personnel that need to constantly identify self-excluded individuals (those who have voluntarily banned themselves due to a gambling problem) and prevent them from entering the casino. When these individuals elect to be a part of this program, their photo is added to your casino’s watchlist, and FR technology assists in identifying them should they appear on the property.

Facial recognition also assists in the identification of banned individuals, or those who have been caught cheating, stealing, or causing problems and need to be prevented from entering. Prior to reliable FR, surveillance operators had to perform manual database searches to identify patrons—wasting time and leaving significant room for error.

Outside of securing a casino’s premise, FR technology can also be used to enhance customer service. Because security teams are often the first personnel patrons encounter as they enter the casino, they must take on the role of customer service representatives, and facial recognition can help improve their service towards VIP patrons by tracking when they enter. Through this monitoring, these VIPs receive better service, and better service leads to happy customers who are more likely to frequent the casino.

Is It Making a Difference?

While the need for human involvement still exists in today’s facial recognition technology, a recent study conducted by Omnigo Software reveals that surveillance operators utilizing FR technology in casinos performed 15x better than their human counterparts alone. When utilizing a FR solution that greatly increases performance, casinos can better locate persons of interest to solve business problems, improve compliance with government mandates, where they exist, and help ensure the best possible customer service.

When it comes to real-life applications of the technology, there is no shortage of proof points that demonstrate how much FR has grown. For example, Omnigo Software has been identifying tens of thousands of people who have excluded themselves from entering casino properties across Canada and the U.S. With such a large population self-excluding, security and surveillance personnel have become increasingly reliant on FR technology simply because they cannot keep track of that many people themselves. At present, during a typical weekend, Omnigo Software processes millions of face images per day, effectively helping prevent self-excluded individuals from entering casinos.

Comprehensive Customer Support

Success and performance are measured not only by the capabilities of the software but also by the approach taken to install the physical hardware in the casino itself.

For example, Omnigo Software—with its more than two decades of experience implementing FR technology in the public safety space—sets itself apart from competitors by providing an expert site survey to assess where to install cameras while taking into account optimal lighting levels and visibility. This hands-on approach to deploying the solution helps ensure that issues are addressed early on and that customers can realize the benefits of FR as quickly as possible.

Across the board, current FR solutions are far more accurate and reliable than even five or 10 years ago. While considering a vendor to implement a facial recognition solution, however, it’s critical to take a comprehensive look at the options available—ensuring the vendor has an all-inclusive customer experience from pre-installation to continued customer support throughout the business relationship.

From an initial site survey to installation to training and application, you should look for a provider that works to meet your needs from beginning to end.

Our latest buyer’s guide can provide some tips on how to find the right FR provider for your organization.

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