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ESSA reported 109 irregular bets for 2012

The European Sports Security Association (ESSA) monitoring group has released a report into incidents of match-fixing during 2012 and showing that it flagged 109 irregular bets with only six subsequently referred to the relevant authorities.

The ESSA is a Brussels-based industry body committed to legal and responsible sportsbetting and works to keep wagering free from insider betting, rigging and manipulation.

The body monitored activities in 27 European Union nations along with Iceland, Norway and Switzerland in 2012 and stated that there is a ‘growing weight of evidence notably published by law enforcement bodies that it is primarily unregulated markets outside of Europe that are being targeted by criminals’.

The ESSA declared that the 2012 figures were identified by its members ‘employing sophisticated monitoring tools’ and contained two less referred cases than for the previous twelve-month period.

“Licensed and regulated online betting has actually facilitated increased security for sporting bodies, consumers and the licensed betting market,” read a statement from ESSA. “Modern digital technologies have allowed us to develop far more efficient and effective anti-corruption measures, notably customer verification details (KYC) and electronic payments.”

The ESSA also said that corrupters will continue to pray on the vulnerabilities of players until key sports governance issues including the lack of salary payments are suitably addressed.

“(There) is a need for greater cooperation between stakeholders and the establishment of betting intelligence units focused on protecting consumers, sports and the regulated betting market. However, any solution must cover a range of issues; the education of athletes and ensuring good sports governance are crucial if corruption is to be addressed. ESSA also believes that it is important that all operators, regardless of size and location, have access to and input into a central security network and we are calling on all operators to contact ESSA and to discuss the value of expanding our network and protecting global regulated betting markets.”