Forum to address interactive issues

February 05, 2002 8:54 AM
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The technology that could pave the way for implementing online gaming is the topic of a forum to be held at UNLV’s William F. Harrah College of Hotel Administration on Wednesday, February 13.

Sponsored by the Interactive Gaming Institute of Nevada (IGI), the forum is expected to attract more than 200 people from 20 gaming companies, as well as regulators, legislators, investors, manufacturers and casino operators.

The conference will focus on products and systems that address three of the most critical areas currently facing the possibility of online gaming: player identification, age verification and location verification.

Two unique features will highlight the conference:

1. Live demonstrations, presentations and exhibitions by technology firms to an elite panel who will examine, question and challenge the applicability of the products and systems; and,

2. Findings about technologies, products and services that may fulfill interactive gaming requirements will be compiled into recommendations published as white papers and provided to all parties interested in the debate.

“We expect to learn about innovations from inside and outside the gaming industry that address these fundamental concerns about interactive gaming,” said Richard Fitzpatrick, CEO of IGT and the Global Institute for Gaming Innovation. “Input from those who are not currently involved with gambling might include privacy technology from medical records companies; those who enforce digital rights for music and movie distribution; or, those who offer global positioning technology from asset-tracking product manufacturers.

“We talked in depth with 12 of Nevada’s leading gaming companies representing more than 60 hotels with gaming licenses and we discovered a disconnect between the technology that appears to exist and what regulators and the general public know about it,” Fitzpatrick said.

A second forum also dealing with the advent of online gaming will be held on March 6. The conference will explore Financial Operations, Credit Cards, Banking, Money Laundering and Alternative Payment Solutions.

A third forum will take a specific look at the online/interactive landscape in Nevada: Intra-Nevada, Intra-Property and Wireless Opportunities.

Last summer, the Nevada legislature enacted a law allowing for the licensing of interactive gaming, provided that “interactive gaming systems are secure and reliable, and provide reasonable assurance that players will be of lawful age and communicating only from jurisdictions where it is lawful to make such communications.”

A number of the largest Nevada gaming corporations presently are in the process of being licensed to offer Internet gaming from outside the U.S. In order to comply with Nevada regulations, their offshore servers will also have to include technology that prohibits U.S. citizens and minors from placing bets on those sites.

The IGI is a non-profit association created to advance, enhance and expedite the implementation of interactive gaming by licensed Nevada companies. It was founded in March 2001 by the Technology Business Alliance of Nevada, a non-profit statewide alliance of firms.

For more information, go to the IGI website at {www.iginevada.com}.