Gambling Software Abuse Investigated By UK's ICO

Published Friday, April 07, 2017 -
Gambling Software Abuse Investigated By UK's ICO

The internet betting industry has had some serious interruptions regarding its integrity and honesty. Over the last few years rumours have been surfacing regarding the abuse of the data obtained by operators while gamblers use their services. The UK’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), which oversees data protection in the jurisdiction is in the process of investigating software employed by online bookmakers that downloads onto a customer’s hard drive unnoticed by the consumer.

Garreth Cameron ICO’s Strategic Liaison Group Manager has said the ICO wants to determine if rumours about the data abuse are true or just sour grapes coming from punters. Cameron commented, “Our enquiries will focus on looking at whether the companies in question have been very clear, very transparent about their use of these technologies,”

A BBC article has focused on the subject targeting Skybet and Totesport as possible users of the software known as ‘iesnare’ which downloads onto computers automatically which was developed by Oregon USA firm Iovation Incorporated. Bookies maintain that the software has no purpose other than to look for fraud and money-laundering activity.  

Brian Chappell, who runs the rights website Justice for Punters maintains that the bookies are using the software illegally, “I actually cleaned my hard drive on my laptop and I intentionally went on the Skybet website before I went on any other internet site and within two seconds, iesnare… now called iovation… they keep changing the name… and there it was,” Chappell said.

“If you open an account with a company and they restrict your account, another thing you might like to try is that you open another account with them using another name,” he said. “Because it’s the same IP address you’re using, it will identify you as a person who’s had an account closed down.”

Defending its reputation Iovation told the BBC it had “no access to information, such as the winning and losing history of players, nor do we have access to specific betting details.”



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