ESSA reports 266 suspicious betting cases in 2017, 45 in football

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February 2 – The ESSA, the 26-member bookmaker betting integrity group, has announced 266 cases of suspicious betting being reported to relevant authorities in 2017, with 114 of them in the last quarter. Football made up 45 of the reported alerts.

Tennis beat football in terms of suspicious betting patterns with 160 alerts generated by the ESSA Early Warning System. Alerts covering other sports saw a marked increase, “spiking from 8% in 2016 and to 23% last year.”

In terms of geographical spread the ESSA said “Europe continues to lead the location of where sporting events have generated alerts, with a total of 144, equating to 54%, generated. Asia, 50 alerts, continues to fill the second spot, with 19% in total.”

For the three-year period 2015-17 has seen ESSA report 496 alerts across 13 different sports.

Khalid Ali, ESSA Secretary General, said: “ The effectiveness of the association’s alert system, bolstered by an expanding membership, continues to be publicly recognised by key stakeholders. New information sharing agreements have also been put in place so that we can react more readily to changing trends and challenges to both our members’ businesses and our partners around the world.”

Ali said the association will engage in four anti-match-fixing projects during 2018, “part of our ongoing policy to participate in and promote integrity efforts on behalf of our members…

“The coming year is set to be another important period for the betting sector and integrity will again be high on the agenda. ESSA will continue to promote the adoption of proportionate and effective integrity policies and market regulations.” The ESSA provides an early warning system for detecting and deterring the corruption of ESSA members’ betting markets. ESSA members are all licensed bookmakers covered by national regulations. The body acts as an integrity lobbying arm in the corruption area and is a stakeholder in the betting policy forums at the European Commission and Council of Europe.

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