Online sports betting market and new technologies: fertile ground for fraud and crime


  • Marcelo Moriconi Bezerra Iscte — Instituto Universitário de Lisboa, Centro de Estudos Internacionais (CEI-Iscte), Lisboa, Portugal
  • João Paulo Almeida Comité Olímpico de Portugal, Lisboa, Portugal



sport betting market, match-fixing, organized crime, corruption, fraud, money laundering


The massification of new technologies have radically changed the sports betting industry. Nowadays, millions of people bet online, and in real time, in a wide range of sport events worldwide. This global market has generated several opportunity structures for crime and fraud. In this current landscape, match-fixing has evolved from being a historical phenomenon in the world of sports to a global criminal problem involving transnational criminal syndicates, professional gamblers, businessmen, umpires, athletes, and intermediaries. Despite the fact that match-fixing has been placed on the public agenda as the greatest threat against the sustainability of the sport, the complexity and extension of the new betting market generates possibilities for fraud, cheating and crime that go beyond fixed matches or competitions. The article has the pedagogical and practical objective of explaining and systematizing the changes in the betting market and types of bets and describing the new opportunity structures for crime and fraud that arise from the new commercial framework. Considering the lack of studies about these issues, the article opens a window of opportunity for new lines of multidisciplinary research on sport, crime, economics and public policy.