Salary Data for Gaming Surveillance Officers and Gambling Investigators

Gaming Surveillance Officers and Gambling Investigators: The Career Path, Education and Training

Casinos and other gambling facilities need people to monitor and investigate activities that could potentially violate laws or threaten the operations. Gaming surveillance officers and gambling investigators are professionals that keep an eye on the games, players, and staff to maintain a safe and fair gaming environment. In this article, we will explore the job descriptions, examples, and requirements for these positions, as well as the steps to get into this industry.

What is Gaming Surveillance Officer and Gambling Investigator?

A gaming surveillance officer is a casino employee that watches over the gaming floor to detect potential cheating or fraud, such as card marking, chip theft, or collusion between players and dealers. They use CCTV systems to monitor activities and identify any suspicious behavior. They also report their observations to the security and law enforcement agencies and provide testimony in court if needed.

A gambling investigator or inspector enforces the gambling laws and regulations by overseeing the gambling facilities’ compliance, conducting background checks on employees and vendors, and investigating complaints or suspected violations. They may work for government agencies, such as the state gaming board, or private organizations, such as consulting firms or law enforcement agencies. They may have to review financial records, interview witnesses, or collaborate with other investigators to solve cases.

Example of Gaming Surveillance Officer and Gambling Investigator Jobs

Here are a few examples of work settings and duties that gaming surveillance officers and gambling investigators may encounter:

– Surveillance officer at a casino: You are monitoring the table games area and notice a player passing chips to another player. You alert the pit boss and security, who then investigate and find that the two players were colluding to cheat the casino. You provide a detailed report of the incident and testify in court if needed.

– Investigator for state gaming board: You receive a complaint from a former employee of a tribal gaming facility alleging embezzlement by the management. You conduct an investigation, request financial documents, interview witnesses, and gather evidence to support or refute the claim. You present your findings to the board and recommend corrective actions or sanctions if necessary.

– Inspector for a gambling equipment vendor: You are performing a routine inspection of a slot machine manufacturer’s facility to ensure its compliance with the technical standards and regulations. You examine the software, hardware, and firmware, and test the machines for accuracy, fairness, and security. You report any issues or discrepancies and advise the company on how to fix them.

Education and Training Requirements for Gaming Surveillance Officer and Gambling Investigator

Most gaming surveillance officers and gambling investigators require a high school diploma or equivalent, although some employers may prefer or require a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, gaming management, or related fields. Some positions may require certification or licenses, such as the Certified Surveillance Professional (CSP) credential from the International Foundation for Protection Officers (IFPO) for surveillance officers.

Training for gaming surveillance officers typically takes several weeks and includes classroom instruction and on-the-job training. They learn about casino rules, games, and procedures, as well as observation techniques, report writing, and legal requirements. They may also receive training on emergency response, first aid, and CPR.

Gambling investigators may have more extensive training and experience in law enforcement, accounting, or auditing. They often undergo background checks and complete specialized courses in gambling regulation, investigative techniques, forensic accounting, or interview and interrogation.

Progression and Advancement Opportunities

Gaming surveillance officers and gambling investigators may start as entry-level or part-time positions and advance to higher-level positions, such as supervisor, manager, or director. They may also move into other gaming-related roles, such as compliance officer, gaming instructor, or surveillance consultant.

To progress in this field, it’s essential to keep updated on the latest technologies, regulations, and industry standards. Networking with peers, attending conferences, and pursuing further education or certification can also increase your chances of advancement.

How to Get into Gaming Surveillance Officer and Gambling Investigator Field

If you’re interested in pursuing a career in gaming surveillance or investigation, here are some steps to consider:

– Research the industry to understand the job requirements, duties, and work environment. Visit local casinos or gaming facilities, talk to professionals in the field, and read industry publications.

– Obtain the necessary education and training. Look for colleges or universities that offer degrees or courses in gaming management, criminal justice, or related fields. Consider attending a training program or workshop offered by industry associations or organizations.

– Gain relevant work experience. Seek internships, part-time or entry-level positions in casinos or gaming facilities to learn more about the industry and gain practical skills.

– Polish your skills and knowledge. Attend conferences, workshops, or webinars to stay updated on the latest technologies, regulations, or trends. Consider pursuing certification or licensing to enhance your credibility and marketability.


Gaming surveillance officers and gambling investigators play a crucial role in maintaining the integrity of the gaming industry and the public’s trust. These positions require a combination of technical skills, interpersonal skills, and ethical conduct to succeed. By pursuing the right education, training, and experience, and staying current with the industry’s developments, you can build a rewarding and challenging career in this field.

Salary Data for Gaming Surveillance Officers and Gambling Investigators

This occupation involves monitoring casino and gaming activities to ensure that they are in compliance with state and federal gaming regulations. The job level can vary from entry-level positions to high-level management roles.

Geography Job Level Union Status Salary
US National Average All levels Nonunion $37,273.60
US National Average All levels Full-time $42,411.20
US National Average All levels Time-based pay $39,187.20
New York All levels Nonunion $43,630
Nevada All levels Nonunion $42,630
Indiana All levels Nonunion $31,140

As indicated by the national average salary data, gaming surveillance officers and gambling investigators can earn between $36,566.40 and $42,411.20 depending on their job level, hours worked, and union status. The highest-paying geographies for this occupation are New York and Nevada, where the average salary is over $42,000 per year. The lowest-paying geography is Indiana, where the average salary is around $31,000 per year.

The effects of unionization on this occupation are not stated in the provided data. However, unionization can potentially increase job security, wages, and benefits for workers in the gaming industry.