Posted by: olymponomics | January 19, 2012

Olympic risk talk: illegal betting

The head of Interpol today warned about the risk of illegal betting syndicates corrupting competitors. This follows from the particular interest of President of the IOC, Jacques Rogge, who highlighted the dangers of illegal betting to the Olympic Games last year. This has emerged as a new security threat to major sporting events such as the Olympics, requiring decision-makers to look further afield than just the treat of terrorism. While such threats are quite real, their often dramatic framing provide a means for security firms and experts to promote agendas that favour investment in security personnel, technologies of surveillance and the imposition of non-routine controls to manage border controls and population movement during Games-time. This has put intense upward pressure on the cost of securing the Olympics since the 1990s, with the final bill now often exceeding a billion dollars. (To put it in context, the cost of security for the Atlanta 1996 Olympics was US$87 million in 2008 prices, whereas the cost of London is more than US$1.1 billion in 2008 prices.)

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