The UN has illegal gambling in its scope



The UN has issued a global report on corruption in sports. The organization has called for greater international cooperation to help strengthen detection and reporting of illegal sports betting. One suggestion from the report was that governments should establish national platforms and contact points for international cooperation. This would link sports governing bodies and other key stakeholders, such as law enforcement agencies and licensed betting operators.

The report called on governments to make sure that national legislation includes laws that appropriately criminalise illegal betting, including obliging betting operators to report any suspicious betting to regulators.

It also suggested that governments, regulators and sports governing bodies should cooperate with internet service providers to identify and block illegal gambling sites, and identify transactions that are suspected to be related to illegal betting. As for anti-money laundering requirements, it is suggested that they should include the banning of the use of anonymous payment processing firms by betting operators, and the recording of customer identification and betting data. Any suspicious transactions and breaches of large bet thresholds by an individual should be reported to the financial crime authorities.

The report cited a 2020 American Gaming Association survey which showed that 52% of bettors used an illegal site, and 82% of those that did had no idea that the betting site was in fact an illegal site.

Ivan Kurochkin’s comments

It's no secret that gambling, especially in unregulated markets, is a pretty popular means of money laundering and corruption. The fight against corruption and money laundering is one of the priority topics in most states, which is reflected in the tightening of regulation, particularly when it comes to the AML rules.

One of the primary means of dealing with anonymous bets, which, in particular, allow the "successful" implementation of illicit plans, is the tightening of the procedures for identifying players, which of course can be successfully controlled if the gambling market is regulated with the precise requirements for operators and payment institutions in place.

A good example of the fight against anonymous bets is Denmark, where anonymous bets should be banned in order to combat money laundering and match-fixing.

The fight against money laundering and the prevention of corruption was and is being conducted not only by the gambling industry. The result can be achieved only with an integrated approach where regulatory frameworks contain the means of evoking the mechanisms to combat money laundering (operator’s and financial institution’s website blockings, players identification, etc.) through international communication and exchanging information to enable successful application of existing tools.


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