The International Betting Integrity Association (IBIA) reported 236 cases of suspicious betting during 2021, with 69 alerts being made in the fourth quarter.
These alerts span across 13 sports and 49 different countries, with tennis and football continuing to dominate.
This figure shows a 13% reduction compared to the 270 cases previously reported in 2020. Prior to this, the average number of alerts stood at 240 between 2018 and 2020. Europe continues to provide the highest number of alerts, offering 50% of the total for the year.
A total of 80 alerts were raised for tennis, which is a decrease from the 98 reported in 2020.
By contrast, football alerts increased by 8% to 66 – its highest annual number reported. On a positive note, 11 sporting or criminal sanctions were given during 2021 due to IBIA alerts.
The IBIA is a global voice on integrity for the licensed betting industry. Its monitoring and anti-corruption alert platform aims to report suspicious activity across betting markets.
Khalid Ali, IBIA CEO, said: “Another challenging year for the sector has passed with the spectre of Covid-19 and its impact on sporting events declining, and hopefully a potential endgame in sight. It is therefore welcomed that the alerts for 2021 showed a downward trend and a return to pre-Covid numbers.
"Challenges, however, persist – notably with the growth of private sports events and establishing integrity protocols to the levels seen in traditional sports bodies. The association is working with a number of stakeholders in this area to improve integrity provisions.”
The IBIA has a longstanding information-sharing partnership with sports and gambling regulators, to ensure its data is used to prosecute corruption.