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In-running or in-play betting

In-running betting (or in-play or live betting as it is also known) is betting while the event is actually taking place, for example, placing a bet on a horserace while the race is being run, or on a football match whilst it is being played. This form of betting takes place mainly, but not exclusively, on sporting events.

In-running betting is predominantly an online activity with bets being made via the internet using either a betting exchange or a traditional bookmaker’s website, but it can also take place in betting shops or over the phone. 

Risks of offering in-running betting 

Offering in-running betting, particularly through online facilities, raises a number of issues that have the potential to impact on the licensing objectives. These issues can be distilled into two groups:

  • the integrity of the betting and the subject of the betting
  • the fairness and openness of the betting. 

Integrity of the sport 

In-running betting offers some increased potential for individuals to exploit this form of gambling illicitly for their own benefit. However, other forms of betting and gambling also have the potential for such exploitation. On the information currently available we don’t consider in–running betting requires special regulatory treatment but is part of our ongoing efforts to maintain integrity in sports betting

Fairness and openness 

Similarly, with regard to the issues potentially affecting fairness and openness, such as speed of feeds or use of ‘bots’, in-running betting does not appear to generate specific additional risks to the licensing objectives as long as betting customers are sufficiently aware of their position and the respective positions of other players and the betting operators. This includes ensuring that any information deficit is clearly understood, as are any built-in time delays to the system. 

We do not consider it necessary to intervene to prevent some players using technology to gain an advantage in terms of speed of information, provided it is clear to all players that this can be done.