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Stoyan Todorov February 16, 2021 4 min read
Sportradar to Roll Its Integrity Service for Free in 2021
Moving its Fraud Detection Service to a free model, Sportradar hopes to be able to tackle corruption in sports more easily.
Sportradar Takes the Integrity Fight to New Partners
Sportradar is making its fraud detection service and tools free for governing bodies and leagues around the world in a bid to clamp down on match-fixing and fraud in the international sports community. Always at the forefront of addressing corruption in sports, Sportradar will now seek to establish stronger ties with existing and new partners through its Universal Fraud Detection System.
This means that the company’s monitoring program that focuses on tracking wagers will scale up and add more. Presently, Sportradar partners with 300-odd entities. Sportradar is happy to foot the bill, at an estimated $1.21 million according to preliminary forecasts for 2021.
The company will offer partner entities two options. One would be the “fermium model” where the company carries out all monitoring itself. Should a match-fixing alert be received, Sportradar would flag the issue to the respective authority and allow them to investigate.
Conversely, Sportradar would be happy to carry out an investigation of its own in exchange for a fee. Already at the forefront of tackling sports fraud, Sportradar is confident sporting organizations, leagues and governing bodies would choose to benefit from the company’s more thorough investigative practices.
Commenting on this development, Sportradar managing director of integrity services Andreas Krannich clarified on this process:
“We can send a blinking red light to raise the alarm. Then it’s up to the sport as to how they proceed, which can include asking Sportradar to help them investigate it further or to go directly to the police.”
Sportradar has the track record to prove its service efficiency, with 5,330 successfully flagged events since 2005. The service has led to 400 cases and 30 successful criminal convictions. The company has recently warned that match-fixing is both on the rise and becoming more sophisticated.
Drawing Interest from the Right People
Sportradar has been actively pushing to publicize its integrity solutions, part of a package deal including big data that has been bought up by media companies and gambling entities from across the world. Sportradar has rolled out various integrity campaigns and tools, including solutions for social media.
The company has taken active steps to remain at the forefront of tackling sports fraud and not least benefit from the good reputation it has built for itself. It has also drawn interest from the likes of Mark Cuban, Ted Leonsis, and Michael Jordan.
Sportradar has made it so that detecting low-level crime and fraud is now possible with automated solutions. While some leagues may try to cover up an incident, Sportradar’s tools combs data entries from thousands of operators worldwide, looking mostly for aberrant betting behavior.
Hiring Intelligence Officers to Help
Flagging such bets, Sportradar can look into the individuals placing the bets and their betting history. Clarifying, Krannich had this to add:
“At the end of the day, betting-related match-fixing is not that different from insider trading on a stock exchange, someone knows upfront what’s happening. Usually, if there’s evidence of insider trading, law enforcement directly starts its investigation, but not for match-fixing.”
To be able to stay on top of potential fraud, though, Sportradar has to expend a significant resource. The company monitored some 650,000 events across 25 sports in 2020 alone. That led to 526 matches that were considered suspicious based on the betting activity that transpired around them.
Sportradar is still not too sure as to how many entities would be rolling in at first. The company expects some 30+ newcomers. The team at Sportradar is no chance hires either. Sportradar employs former law and intelligence officers, including people from the CIA. That gives the company an impressive standing within the sports integrity community.