Safeguarding Integrity in Sports & Esports Betting

Corruption in the betting world poses a serious issue, affecting not only bookmakers, but also genuine bettors worldwide.

Fortunately, for both punters and betting platforms, they possess the necessary skills and tools to counter scam operations, identify suspicious betting activities as they emerge, and hold the criminals in the betting sector accountable.

The International Betting Integrity Association (IBIA) lies at the core of the effort to combat match-fixing and corruption in the betting sector.

international betting integrity association
Image: IBIA

Who is the IBIA?

The IBIA collaborates with numerous entities across sports, sports betting, and esports betting industries, encompassing client, sports, and esports data providers.

IBIA is a crucial force in ensuring integrity within the gambling industry through observing markets, scrutinizing dubious betting patterns, and penalizing those implicated.

By forging relationships with major participants in the gambling community and working at local, national, and international levels, the IBIA actively fights corruption globally.

Their goal is to safeguard integrity for operators and users throughout the gambling sector and to prosecute those who menace it.

The Importance of Integrity in Sports Betting

Integrity forms the basis of sports and esports betting. Betting platforms anticipate openness and honesty from customers who expect the same fairness and equity in return. A breach in this trust can cause the global gambling industry’s structures to deteriorate.

Match-fixing and similar types of betting corruption threaten the mutual trust between customers and betting portals. These illicit activities pose a risk in destabilizing the entire betting sector.

No legitimate site or bettor desires any association with fraudulent groups or individuals, and this is why the IBIA exerts great effort to preserve honesty and integrity in the gambling business.

Activities and Initiatives of the IBIA

Quarterly Integrity Reports offer rich, visually engaging data on suspicious alerts, trends, and highlights from certain markets. (IBIA)

The fulcrum of IBIA’s anti-corruption campaign is its Monitoring & Alert Platform. The platform scrutinizes markets from associated platforms and immediately trips red flags upon detecting dubious betting action.

The platform’s effectiveness stems from high-quality partnerships that the IBIA has fostered with leading organizations such as FIFA, IOC, UEFA, ITIA, and more, encompassing partnerships with betting platforms like Bet365, Betway, DraftKings, Pinnacle as well as esports betting sites like Rivalry.

Besides the Monitoring & Alert Platform, the IBIA offers different resources via its site, comprising:

  • Data Standards: Details on the quality necessary for gathering sports event data for betting.
  • IBIA Academy: A collection of articles, videos, podcasts, infographics and more that delve into corruption and match-fixing in sports betting and how to combat them effectively.
  • Ad-Hoc Studies: A world map that represents the strength of gambling regulations with unique country profiles.
  • Quarterly Integrity Report: A report, updated every three months, showing when and where dubious betting activities occurred, with specific emphasis on geopolitical areas and different countries.

Seeing the IBIA in Action

In June 2023, the IBIA played a critical part in penalizing ten snooker players for match-fixing. After receiving data from the IBIA highlighting dubious betting patterns and signs of match-fixing in matches throughout 2022, the WPBSA imposed sanctions on all ten players, who were from China.

In 2022, the IBA reported 268 alerts to authorities which led to legal actions against 15 teams, officials or players.

What is the Future Outlook?

Considering the rapid growth of esports tournaments, it seems likely that the IBIA will expand further into the esports betting industry and include companies from more markets globally.

Future considerations include expansion of global partnerships, adoption of new technology and continued improvements to data quality and accuracy.

Whether dealing with match-fixing, manipulation of sports and esports odds, corruption or bribery, the IBIA is at the forefront of the global endeavour to maintain a clean sports betting environment.

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