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PROLIFERATION OF SPORTSBETTING SITES WORRIES SPORTS AUTHORITIES
What appear to be exaggerated claims of a proliferation of online sportsbetting websites is worrying international sports authorities according to a report from Agence France Presse this week. The authorities claim that there are now an estimated 15 000 such sites including some 13 000 illegal venues, moving revenues of an estimated Euro 15 billion a year.
Reporting that these numbers have now triggered an official reaction, AFP quotes International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Jacques Rogge, who last year compared the gambling issue to the gangrene caused by doping in sports and suggested the formation of a world surveillance agency based on the model of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA).
The AFP report claims that the "explosion of Internet sportsbetting" is controlled mostly from Asia, although it does not substantiate this information. Commenting that gambler losses either fairly or as a consequence of fraud, are threatening the credibility of sport, AFP quotes Declan Hill, a journalist and British expert on the problem, who alleges that the amount of corruption in global sports has increased almost 100-fold in the past five years thanks to Internet-based gambling.
"Ten years ago, national lotteries controlled 100 percent of the sports (betting) market," Hill said. "Today, the French National Lottery, for example, controls only 25 percent of the French market, but their number of clients has multiplied by four times," he said.
The problem has continued almost unabated since 2006, when a study conducted by the independent Information Systems Security Consulting firm warned of the criminalisation of Internet sports betting, the AFP report continues.
"The sector of online gaming is today mostly controlled by criminal groups," the security firm said in the study commissioned by a group of European state lotteries. Players had been approached and threatened, referees influenced, and matches bought, it found.
AFP also points to money laundering as a threat, claiming that the amount of money traded on a single website can surpass Euros 100 000 for a match in the third division football in Romania, or even the first division of the Czech women's league.
"Experts estimate that 85 percent of these websites have been created for the sole purpose of "washing away" dirty money", it claims, without identifying its sources.
The AFP piece identifies tennis, football and cricket federations as "...the pioneers in the fight against harmful effects of illegal gambling." However, it points out that these same federations are trying to secure a financial stake for themselves.
Each year, French gamblers place sports bets worth more than Euro 510 million on the Internet. Of this, only around Euro 12 million is believed to be legal, through the French National Lottery, the only authorised online sports betting operator in the country.
Following the example of the French Tennis Federation, a number of sports bodies are now trying to claim part of the lucrative Internet betting industry on the model of television broadcasting agreements. The federation has accused various sites of offering illegal betting in violation of the exclusive rights it has to commercially exploit its events.
Danske Spil Bingo Moves to Microgaming -
The national lottery of Denmark, Danske Spil, is live on the Microgaming Bingo Network. Danske Spil, the Danish national lottery, is live on the Microgaming Bingo Network following a change to its licence conditions.
Quickfire live on Strendus -
Quickfire powered by Microgaming is extending its reach in the LatAm region with the signing of Strendus. Strendus is the online division of Logrand Entertainment Group. The group comprises several companies that operate gaming and entertainment establishments in Mexico, running 14 land-based casinos in total.
Quickfire content live on BetatHome -
Online gaming and sports betting company bet-at-home was founded in 1999. Today the company has 4.8 million registered customers around the world, offering sports betting, casino, live casino, Vegas games, poker and virtual sports.
Microgaming has donated £30,000 between four charities -
Gift of Giving provides Microgamingís customers the opportunity to vote for one of several charities in their region. In lieu of Christmas gifts, £30,000 is split equally between four global regions: Isle of Man, UK and Europe, Africa, and Rest of the World.
Entertainment Betting Odds: 90th Academy Awards -
The Shape of Water leads Sundayís 90th Academy Awards (8 PM ET, ABC) with 13 Oscar nominations, but when it comes to Best Picture, this highly-acclaimed film is a +140 second-favorite behind Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri at Ė115.
Fair Play Bets and QuickFire in Deal -
Fair Play Bets enjoys an unrivalled reputation for an outstanding player experience, with secure deposits and withdrawals, surprising casino bonuses and committed customer support. Fair Play Bets is licensed in UK, Malta and Curacao.
Cavaliers Aim to Take Down Wizards on 2/22/18 -
The Cleveland Cavaliers have looked like a different team since making their moves at the trade deadline. The Washington Wizards are up next for the Cavaliers, who will be at home after the All-Star break.
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