SBC News BOS: Swedish operators united in support of data exchange against match-fixing

BOS: Swedish operators united in support of data exchange against match-fixing

Swedish operators have pledged to back the terms of a memorandum proposing greater cooperation between key stakeholders on match-fixing threats.

Currently under review by the Swedish government, the memorandum amends terms of the Gaming Act of 2018 to allow licensed operators to request and share more data related to suspected match-fixing incidents.

Proposed amendments would establish a new framework for the exchange of information between Spelinspektionen, Sweden’s Gambling Inspectorate, sports associations/authorities, and licensed operators to combat match-fixing and related threats.

Changes to the Gambling Act will establish the specific circumstances necessary for stakeholders to cooperate in detecting and preventing cheating, fraud, and other criminal activities threatening the integrity of Swedish sports.

However, the memorandum carries sensitivities related to the personal data of athletes, which could be processed to determine an event affected by match-fixing and the extent of the athlete’s suspected influence.

The framework’s data concerns have been raised by the Swedish online gambling trade association, Branschföreningen för Onlinespel (BOS), but it was noted that members needed a deeper information exchange with sports authorities.

BOS Secretary General, Gustaf Hoffstedt, states: “Due to GDPR and other privacy legislation, there are obstacles for betting companies and sports associations to cooperate against match-fixing when it comes to exchanging information about individuals. The government now wants to remove that obstacle, and it is, of course, something that we, from the industry’s side, welcome.”

Sweden has been actively combating match-fixing, as seen in the suspension of football players for match-fixing and betting breaches, and its agreement to join the European Macolin Convention to prevent match-fixing.

Hoffstedt concluded: “In recent years, Sweden has conducted successful work against match-fixing, and the number of suspected manipulated matches has been decreasing. An enhanced opportunity for information exchange between betting companies and sports federations further strengthens the fight against match-fixing.”

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