The International Betting Integrity Association (IBIA) published its first quarter (Q1) figures for 2020, reporting 61 reports of suspected betting to local authorities so far.
The total is 36 percent higher than the 45 cases in Q4 2019 and 65 percent higher than the 37 alerts recorded in Q1 2019, with IBIA members registering a rise in dubious betting activity in the week before the widespread mid-March suspension due to the global COVID-19 outbreak.
Khalid Ali, IBIA’s CEO: “The industry’s main focus is quite understandably on product availability and business viability in a particularly challenging period for the sector globally. That said, it is important to note that the vulnerability of sports and betting to corruption remains an ever-present danger to operator finances.
“IBIA saw an increase in suspicious betting activity in the week leading to the global sports shutdown highlighting the opportunism of corrupters.”
Key data reported in its Q1 notifications show that 44 percent of sporting event warnings were activated in Europe, with just 5 percent of the notifications in the North American sector (3 cases) and 10 percent in Latin America (6 cases).
The study also revealed that tennis remained the highest sport-generating event, reporting 31 alerts, with 18 alerts being produced by football following closest behind. Five and four warnings were created respectively by basketball and table tennis, with football, cricket and boxing rounding off the list with one warning each.
Ali stated: “Whilst there has since been a relative lull, we fully expect the business threat to rise as sport is restored and betting product catalogues return to a level of normality. Indeed, it is clear that corrupters are still operating and seeking to exploit the current situation.
“IBIA will continue to utilise its unique global monitoring platform to protect its members and sports from fraud during this difficult time; product integrity and consumer trust will be key to the sector’s recovery.”
Other key data for Q1 2020:
- 15 – number of alerts reported in the week before the widespread suspension of sport
- 11 – Russia ranking the highest country for alerts reported
- 7 – alerts reported since the widespread suspension of sport in mid-March
The entire report can be viewed here.