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Statistics and research release

Risk algorithms data

We collected data on safer gambling algorithm triggers, stakes, session length and losses and payment methods on slots play from seven operators.


The data and why we collected it

The Gambling Commission collected data on safer gambling algorithm triggers, stakes, session length and losses and payment methods on slots play from seven operators.

Where operator algorithms placed consumers into more than the four categories that were specified, operators were requested to make judgement to place into the most appropriate category.

The data was collected in April 2021 in order to inform our advice to Government and ongoing policy development. Data on payment providers covers the period from February to April 2021.

The aim of the data collection was to help determine whether there is a relationship between high-staking levels, and other indicators, and players experiencing harm.


How this data should be used

The data shows that high risk consumers exist at all staking levels, all spend levels and for all payment methods. It does not imply that removing high stakes will remove risk to players, as there is evidence that risk already exists at all staking levels.

However, using safer gambling algorithms as an imperfect proxy for harm, the data shows that there is a slight correlation between higher staking levels and higher propensity for players to be flagged as medium-risk or high-risk.

It is important to note that:

  • the slight correlation between higher stakes and risk is by no means conclusive, and not necessarily linear
  • we would expect more red flags as indicators increase, as high staking and/or spend are used to train algorithms
  • red flags can be a positive, if players are subsequently managed (through customer interactions, enhanced due diligence, etc.) properly and effectively.


It is important to note that the data does not show the relationship between being flagged and any subsequent customer interactions or change in consumer behaviour.

The data only represents of a handful of remote operators whose algorithms may not use the same triggers.

In addition to this it is also essential to note that:

  • this data is a snapshot in time and therefore is not reflective of ongoing risk as players can move in and out of Problem Gambling Severity Index (PGSI) harm throughout their consumer journey
  • players who might be flagged as high risk in one month could undergo enhanced due-diligence checks and move into the no risk category and vice versa
  • high risk does not have to mean harm being experienced as it could act as a prevention. Similarly, no risk does not have mean no harm being experienced
  • the majority of data in this request relates to slots only while algorithms would take into account other products when flagging customers
  • players can reconcile losses in slots elsewhere through their gambling journeys.

Data and downloads



We are always keen to hear how these statistics are used and would welcome your views on this publication.

Give us feedback about these statistics.

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