The growth of cybercrime in the online gambling sector will come under the spotlight in a new research project led by the University of Wolverhampton.
Professor Graham Brooks has been awarded a €146,000 (£114,0000) Marie Curie Fellowship, an EU research grant, to examine how organised crime networks are targeting betting websites and make recommendations on how to prevent cyber attacks.
Professor Brooks’ work will focus on sports betting sites, which are prime targets for attacks. “There is a long history linking gambling and organised crime but the increase in online activity makes networking, extortion, money laundering and anonymity easier than ever,” he said.
ICT now makes it possible for organised crime to form networks without the restrictions of geographic proximity and cyber attacks are on the increase
“The growth in the online gambling market is estimated at €13 billion per annum in the EU and such sums of revenue attract unwanted attention from organised cybercriminals. ICT now makes it possible for organised crime to form networks without the restrictions of geographic proximity and cyber attacks are on the increase. We hope that our work will result in recommendations to protect the millions of punters who have money in online gambling accounts and make it harder for criminals to infiltrate these sites.”
The research aims to establish techniques to manage external cyber-threats and set standards of information management and dissemination of information to cybersecurity centres in the EU.
Professor Brooks will be working with Rutger Leukfeldt of NHL University in the Netherlands. The research will start next year and is expected to take around 18 months, with recommendations made to the EU on completion of the work.
Marie Curie Fellowships are highly sought after, with only five or fewer awarded each year for EU researchers.