Football tops GLMS suspicious betting activity reports in Q3 2019

Europe accounted for the bulk of alerts, with 166 generated in Q3 of which 156 were in relation to football betting.

The Global Lottery Monitoring System (GLMS), the sports betting integrity body for the lottery industry, reported 23 matches to its partners in the third quarter of 2019, with football again topping its list of suspicious betting alerts. GLMS sent out a total of 209 alerts to its members during the three months to the end of September, with 190 these attributed to suspicious activity in the global football betting market. Basketball and tennis followed in a distant joint second with five alerts each in the quarter, then American football with four, eSports on two and one each for handball, ice hockey and table tennis.

Europe accounted for the bulk of alerts, with 166 generated in Q3 of which 156 were in relation to football betting. Asia followed with 20 alerts, all for football, with South America coming third with 10. In contrast, just three alerts were registered for the whole of Africa, while there were no suspicious betting alerts at all for the Oceania region during the quarter. Of all the alerts that were flagged in Q3, nine were red alerts, suggesting serious irregularities or allegations of match-fixing made by a named source.

Ludovico Calvi, President of GLMS, highlighted: “Our monitoring and intelligence have been particularly intense with the beginning of the new sport season on Q3. We were pleased to continue building solid foundations for global responsibilities and actions in the fight against sport competition manipulations.”

A total of 171 alerts were raised before an event started, with just two being filed during the game. The GLMS noted that with the events that raised in-play alerts, both ended as expected. After these alerts are sent out, if an investigation can uncover no explanation for the suspicious activity, GLMS generates a report on that match or event.

Of the 23 alerts that became reports, 17 were in relation to football, with seven flagged to football’s European governing body UEFA and one to global body FIFA. Other football reports were split between local governing authorities. GLMS filed five reports with the International Olympic Committee, in addition to two with the Tennis Integrity Unit and one with the Esports Integrity Coalition. A total of 15 reports were sent to local governing authorities in Q3.

The report comes after GLMS last week repeated its call for more countries to ratify the Council of Europe’s Convention on the Manipulation of Sports Competitions to help strengthen its impact on tackling match-fixing in sport. Also known as the ‘Macolin Convention’, the Convention came into force last month, setting out a legal framework to tackle match-fixing, creating legal definitions for issues such as conflicts of interest and illegal betting, and establishing new controls to address poor governance and the handling of confidential information.