Date: 04.04.2024

by Adam Dworak

Strengthening the Fight Against Match-Fixing: Sweden’s New Legislative Proposal

In a bold move to curb match-fixing, the Swedish government has laid out a new memorandum proposing significant amendments to the nation’s Gaming Act.

This initiative seeks to empower licensed operators and regulatory bodies with enhanced data processing and sharing capabilities, specifically targeting suspected instances of match-fixing in sports.

Enhanced Data Processing and Sharing

Under the proposed changes, licensed gaming operators in Sweden would gain the authority to process personal data of players under suspicion of match-fixing. This amendment aims to facilitate a more robust exchange of information between Sweden’s gambling regulator, Spelinspektionen, licensed operators, and sports associations, thereby fortifying the integrity of sports competitions.

The memorandum carefully outlines the circumstances under which a player’s personal data may be processed, ensuring that such measures are only taken when necessary to identify and mitigate the impact of suspected match-fixing activities.

Specifics of the Proposed Amendment

The proposal emphasizes the necessity of data processing in instances where it’s crucial to ascertain the specifics of potentially compromised sporting events. This includes identifying the individuals involved in “individual” sporting events to pinpoint the exact nature and scope of the suspected match-fixing.

Implementation Timeline

Should the proposal be adopted, the amendments to Sweden’s Gaming Act are slated to come into effect on December 1, 2024, marking a significant milestone in the nation’s ongoing battle against match-fixing.

Sweden’s Continued Efforts Against Match-Fixing

Sweden has been actively engaged in combating match-fixing, as evidenced by various actions taken by the Swedish Football Association and the country’s accession to the Macolin Convention. These efforts underscore Sweden’s commitment to maintaining the fairness and integrity of sports competitions.

State-owned operator Svenska Spel, once critical of proposed anti-match-fixing measures, has also voiced its support for the nation’s adherence to international conventions aimed at eradicating match-fixing.

Industry Support for the Proposal

The memorandum has received a positive reception from industry bodies, including the Swedish online gambling trade body Branschföreningen för Onlinespel (BOS). BOS Secretary-General Gustaf Hoffstedt praised the government’s initiative, highlighting the potential benefits of enhanced information sharing in the fight against match-fixing, despite the challenges posed by privacy regulations.

Our Comment on the Article

The Swedish government’s proposed amendments to the Gaming Act represent a proactive and pragmatic approach to tackling the persistent issue of match-fixing in sports. By enabling more effective data processing and collaboration among regulators, operators, and sports associations, Sweden is setting a commendable precedent in safeguarding the integrity of sports.

As the proposal moves forward, it will be imperative for all stakeholders to work together seamlessly, ensuring that the rights and privacy of individuals are respected while taking decisive action against fraudulent activities in sports.