What is the International Betting Integrity Association IBIA?
The International Betting Integrity Association is a leading not-for-profit association founded in 2005 in Brussels, Belgium, as ESSA (Sports Betting Integrity). The Association changed its name in 2019, concentrating its attention on the representation of sports betting operators wishing to be regulated.
The Association runs a powerful anti-corruption tool, i.e., “Monitoring & Alert Platform,” to keep close track of any suspicious betting-related operations on its members’ betting markets, which it then reports to the relevant parties.
In short, the anti-corruption tool aims to detect anything in the betting industry that could be seen as unusual. The International Betting Integrity Association works with large organizations such as IOC, FIFA, and betting regulators, utilizing their data to track corruption or wrongdoings.
The Association’s main objective is to eliminate illegal activities like spot-fixing, match-fixing, and other forms of corruption in sports. Members of the Association are given their regulatory obligations to follow according to the countries that offered them their licenses.
Aside from that, they also need to work alongside other stakeholders in the gambling industry to tackle betting-related corruption. They work in unity to play a role in the analysis and prosecution of guilty parties, in addition to looking towards sanctioning those involved.
What does the International Betting Integrity Association IBIA do?
As stated, the International Betting Integrity Association’s primary mission is to spot and eliminate illegal activity such as spot-fixing, match-fixing, and other forms of sports-related corruption.
While tracking down and prosecuting those involved in spot-fixing, match-fixing, and other illegal methods of influencing the result of sports events are always the Association’s main priority, the body also aims to educate people on such matters.
The Association believes that educating those in sports is essential to improving the overall situation around sports-related corruption. This typically involves players and other sports personnel, which the Association believes is crucial to protecting the fairness, integrity, and transparency of all sports.
In this desire to spread awareness, the International Betting Integrity Association supports various EU Erasmus+-funded anti-match fixing and sport fixing projects.
The Association regularly maintains a transparency policy, publishing quarterly integrity reports reviewing activity reported on the Monitoring & Alert Platform.
In July 2014, the Association released its report for the year’s second quarter. In the report, the body reported that 47 percent of all alerts regarding the integrity of the gambling market came from Europe. Asia and South America, on the other hand, accounted for 13 percent of alerts apiece. Thirty-eight cases were reported in the second fiscal quarter of 2021, a 41 percent decline from the first quarter. It was also lower than the 65 cases reported during the same period in 2020.
Who are the members of the IBIA, and how to become a member?
The International Betting Integrity Association’s members include several of the world’s most prominent regulated gambling operators. Such esteemed members include sportsbooks such as bet365, 888sport, Betway, Entain, LeoVegas, Unibet, etc. The IBIA’s associate members include Kambi and Stats Perform, and its strategic partners include SBC, BGC, and Jdigital.
In November, Mohegan Gaming & Entertainment also announced its membership in the IBIA.
The Association’s members’ goal is to combat betting corruption to safeguard the integrity of sports and their respective businesses. All members must undergo a strict vetting process to adhere to the Association’s code of conduct, entrusting them to offer responsible and fair betting practices.
How does the BGC work with other associations and regulators?
IBIA has close alliances with its strategic partners, including the UK’s Betting and Gaming Council and the European Gaming and Betting Association.
The Association also signed a partnership agreement with Branschföreningen för Onlinespel (BOS) in 2020 with a focus on the challenges put forth by the regulatory changes in Sweden and endorsing practical betting and integrity provisions.
Moreover, the IBIA has long-term information-sharing alliances with notable sports bodies such as UEFA, FIFA, the IOC, and the TIU, and various regulators to use this data to prosecute sports-related corruption.
What impact does the IBIA have on the gambling landscape (regulators, sportsbooks, etc.) in the United Kingdom?
The IBIA is considered the leading global voice regarding integrity for the licensed gambling industry. Using its influence, the Association works with esteemed organizations such as FIFA, the IOC, and gambling regulators, utilizing their data to keep tabs on corruption.
The gambling landscape and its regulations have constantly been evolving in response to the ever-growing use of digital media over the past years. After all, as the industry evolves, its regulations follow suit.
Gaming operators must be wary of the most critical guidelines to comply with the constantly changing European and UK gambling regulations. Compliance with relevant regulations is crucial while guaranteeing that players’ interests are protected, and legal practices are upheld.