How NJ is Tracking its Online Gamblers
Last week the State of New Jersey became the third in the United States to offer online gambling. The only geographic restriction? The gambler must be on New Jersey soil. That, in turn, means the state must accurately determine the location of the computer or mobile device and do a "point in poly" to see if it's inside or outside the boundary. The company charged with that work is GeoComply. After a five day trial, all systems were "go."
The geolocation technology, which uses data including the identification of a computer's Wi-Fi network and the location of reception towers near a cellphone, is working as it should, according to regulators and technology providers.
Anna Sainsbury, CEO of GeoComply, said adjustments to the technology used by most of the New Jersey casinos offering Internet gambling have reduced the "false negative" rate to about 10 percent. That means only one in 10 users will wrongly get an error message saying they are not in New Jersey, even though they are. That is 25 percent below the level of false negatives Nevada experienced when it launched online gambling earlier this year, she said.
Sainsbury said the technology is now accurate "to within a few meters," and most users along the state's borders should be able to log on and gamble.
Those who try to mask their location (using "illegal software) or those whose devices have trouble with location determination are denied access. Apparently, things have gone rather smoothly at the rollout. The big challenge? Getting credit card companies to make funds available for gambling.
GeoComply has a woman CEO. The other company I know in this space is Neustar (formerly Quova). Interestingly, at launch Quova had a woman CEO, after it was acquired by Neustar is still has one, but a differnt one.