Finnish gamblers will no longer be able to play on slot machines present in shops between 9pm and 9am under new rules set to come into force next month.
Veikkaus, Finland’s state-owned betting company, which holds a monopoly, has moved to limit residents’ playtime on slot machines starting 1 September.
From then on, shops will be required to switch off slot machines after 9pm, though this limit does not apply to slot machines at other points of sale.
Furthermore, Veikkaus has taken steps to limit games’ visibility. Customers will no longer be able to view games or play them until first identifying themselves as of next month. This applies to slot machines in shops, petrol stations, kiosks and restaurants.
“Veikkaus wants to offer the opportunity to go to the store without being able to play on the slot machines,” said Susanna Saikkonen, the organisation’s Vice President of Sustainability.
“Veikkaus also offers customers the opportunity to completely prevent their own playing on slot machines. The locks can be switched on, for example, via Veikkaus’ web service or our customer service.”
Ultimately, these new restrictions form part of a wider range of measures introduced by Veikkaus in recent years.
The state-owned company is aiming to crack down on problem gambling by making it easier to prevent play or outright avoid things like slot machines altogether.
“Identified gambling is the key to gaining control over one's own gambling,” continued Saikkonen, adding: “Veikkaus is becoming a gambling company where all gambling requires identification in both digital and physical channels.”