While the majority of sports betting establishments offer a world of thrills, hair-raising competition and unceasing entertainment, there is a large number that have unfortunately experienced a flood of criminal activity in their midst.
It makes sense, considering the amount of money there is and the number of desperate individuals looking to bring in massive amounts of money for little to no cost. However, the question that needs to be asked here is, has online sports betting made it easier for the criminals?
A History of Crime in Sports Betting
Let’s first take a look at the criminal activity in sports betting in days gone by. Sports betting has pretty much existed as long as the sports themselves, which means that enough time has gone by to see the industry experience multiple waves of crime, as well as a number of legal changes because of it.
World-famous events that were home to Melbourne Cup and Cox Plate betting weren’t resistant to match-fixing either, with one of the greatest examples being the ever-famous horse, Phar Lap. Phar Lap didn’t simply survive an attempt to take his life here in Australia, he also allegedly became the victim of bookmaking crime was later poisoned by the mob after a move to America.
Money Laundering in Sports Betting
Of all the issues in sports betting crime, being able to launder huge amounts of money the provided channels has to be the biggest. Laundering money has been a burden for a large number of betting establishments for an extremely long time and still continues to rear its ugly head today.
What we have to ask ourselves here is if money laundering has in any way become more available to criminals with online betting? A little bit of research suggests that it has.
In fact, in 2014 we saw a massive issue where officials discovered criminals laundering more than $140 billion every year and members of the International Centre for Sport Security (ICSS) were quoted saying that the evolution of the global sports betting market was directly linked to this.
Illegal Betting: A Thorn in Sports Betting’s Side
I think it’s safe to say that online sports betting has definitely increased criminal activity, which would ultimately insinuate that it has made crime easier.
The way in which these cyber criminals go about it differs from illegal sportsbook to illegal sportsbook, but it generally involves conning the punter into thinking they operate above board. Without having to answer to any authorities, these illegal gambling establishments basically have the freedom to do what they like, which a frightening thought to say the very least.
This essentially puts into perspective the importance of ensuring that the sites you engage in sports betting at are both legal and trustworthy. To be fair, the majority of illegal sports betting sites sit outside of the borders of Australia, but that is not to say that you can’t access the offshore illegal sites. Moral of the story: always engage in smart, legal betting.