DraftKings has upgraded its geolocation abilities in a major way, partnering with GeoComply to stop users from jurisdictions that it does not serve.
The move comes after the daily fantasy sports operator had come under some scrutiny for a perceived inability to block users based on their location.
GeoComply is considered the “gold standard” for geolocation in the regulated online gaming space, and is used by the vast majority of online casino and poker sites that operate in New Jersey.
The partnership between DraftKings and GeoComply
DraftKings announced the deal to retain GeoComply for its geolocation services that “are designed to verify player eligibility for the DraftKings site, based on the player’s current location, accurate to within 50 yards in most cases,” according to a press release on Friday.
Less than a month ago, GeoComply announced its “Solus” suite of services for the DFS industry.
From the release:
“We are committed to the integrity of our product, which is why we are partnering with GeoComply to leverage their industry-leading geolocation compliance solution,” said DraftKings COO Paul Liberman. “The introduction of this new service is part of our ongoing efforts to ensure that we continue to meet and exceed the increasing demands within the DFS industry, while also continuing to innovate.”
“DraftKings has been an innovative leader in the DFS industry and we’re proud to offer our services on their site and to their players,” said Anna Sainsbury, CEO of GeoComply USA. “DraftKings is the ideal partner to help take our Solus solution to a new level of engagement and further enhance its consumer protection services via our adaptive technologies.”
It became apparent that DraftKings had uploaded a new geolocation solution with an announcement earlier this week as players experienced some issues accessing the site.
DraftKings’ past problems with geolocation
A recent New York Times story noted that DraftKings was easily accessible by using a proxy, and that a similar tactic was not successful at FanDuel.
Filings in the New York attorney general’s attempt to stop DraftKings and FanDuel from operating in the state noted that DraftKings took nearly half a million dollars in entry fees from player accounts where daily fantasy sports are illegal.
What GeoComply will do for DraftKings
GeoComply should instantly be able to stop almost all users that attempt to play real-money contests on DraftKings’ platform from ineligible locations — which include six states in the U.S.
DFS generally requires a gaming license to operate outside of the U.S. and Canada, and most sites don’t serve customers from other countries. DraftKings also holds a gaming license in the U.K., but has not started offering contests there.
The release notes that Solus will “provide the best available defense against proxies, while minimizing any impact for DraftKings users within allowed locations.”
Other changes at DraftKings
The addition of GeoComply is not the only major change DraftKings has instituted lately:
- There is now a “Responsible Gaming” section on the DraftKings main page and an easily accessible way for players to self exclude themselves.
- Players signing up are now required to give their birthday, an apparent effort to increase the site’s age verification protocol.
It seems likely that some of changes are coming as DraftKings works to get in compliance with new regulations proposed by Massachusetts attorney general Maura Healey, and as it prepares to enter the UK market.
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