Better prepared than sorry: Why is data security in sports betting software everything?

What if you knew that your sports betting business is going to be part of a USD $167.66 billion industry by 2029? You will probably take steps to double down, or diversify in several different sports, or expand your geographical horizons to leverage this opportunity.

However, we believe you should make data security your priority, and make it one of your unique selling propositions. That’s because the more lucrative a business, the more data threats you will face.

When a famous casino was shut down by online ‘hacktivists’

Back in 2014, Las Vegas Sands Corporation (LVS), owner of the Venetian and Palazzo casino resorts in Las Vegas as well as several casino resorts in Asia, faced a cyber attack by a self-proclaimed ‘hacktivist’ group from Iran. Why? That’s because LVS CEO Sheldon Adelson supported a US military strike against Iran. The attack was composed of malware that shut down company email and phone lines, and wiped out hard drives.

Worse, the hackers also stole customer credit card data, driver’s license information, and social security numbers. The company had to shut down all its casino websites for over a week, losing credibility before online players. Most of the company’s Las Vegas servers were impacted and reportedly the whole ordeal cost the company excess of $40 million.

No, our mission is not to scare you, but to prepare you. First, let us understand how crucial data security is for sports betting software.

Why should you double-down data security in sports betting software?
# 1 To prevent cyber attacks

There are millions of dollars of money being exchanged in sports betting games. Credibility of such a website is everything. Cyberattacks aim to disable, steal, or destroy important information through unauthorized access to computer systems, networks or devices. Sports betting websites can invest in prevention of these attacks and minimize the risks significantly.

Here are some measures to prevent cyber attacks -

1. Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR): This helps in detecting and responding to known attack code.

2. Boundary firewalls and internet gateways: This includes web proxy, network perimeter defenses, web filtering, firewall policies etc to block access to known malicious domains.

3. Secure configuration: This is a standard recommended configuration that restricts the functionality of every device, application or operating system to what’s needed for the business function.

4. Password policy: This helps in generating safer, and more secure passwords.

5. Patch management: This addresses vulnerabilities that are patched in a way that matches the level of risk each represents.

6. User access control

# 2 To maintain the integrity of sports betting system

You need to ensure that the results of the bets and wagers are accurate and fair. When you install cybersecurity measures, there’s a slim chance of anyone altering the bets and wagers in an unauthorized way.

# 3 To prevent fraud and money laundering

There can be activities such as insider cheating, cheat-sheets shared by old players or employees, or other malicious attempts to earn money. Through anti-money-laundering measures, sports betting operators can deter and detect such frauds. They can also create a systematic process to monitor transactions and protect their data. They may conduct AML background checks of identities against exclusion lists such as -

  • Watchlists

  • Money laundering lists

  • Sanction lists

  • Criminal databases

  • Politically Exposed Persons (PEP) lists

  • Government-issued data sources

# 4 To comply with regulatory requirements

You need data security also because many countries regulate sports betting platforms to protect players and ensure the integrity of the betting. These regulations want operators to adhere to certain standards of data security by implementing cyber and network security measures. Operators who do not implement these may have to face fines, penalties or legal action that may damage their reputation and post financial challenges.

Applicable data security laws in the US for sports betting
  • Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA)

  • Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

  • Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)

  • Federal Trade Commission Act (FTCA)

  • Consumer Financial Protection Act (CFPA)

  • Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA)

  • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPA)

  • Electronics Communications Privacy Act (ECPA)

# 5 To protect sensitive information

Sensitive information may be as personal as names, addresses, and credit card numbers or general information such as betting information or online transactions. In the hands of the hackers, this information may pose serious threats to the credibility of your sports betting platform through identity thefts, data breach, or financial frauds. The only way to protect your sports betting platform from such threats is to implement data security measures.

Final thoughts

How can you implement these measures to ensure data security? There are two ways of doing this. You can hire a separate cyber security firm to do the job for you. Or you can hire a sports betting software development company that offers end-to-end solutions. Such a company will use trusted third parties to implement data security measures while developing your sports betting website. We are that company. Call us.

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