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IC360, RealResponse Launch Alert360 Anonymous Tip Portal

Sports integrity firm IC360 launched Alert360, an anonymous reporting system that allows athletes and others to file harassment complaints.

Vintage Phone Speach Bubble Says Alert360
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J.R. Duren Avatar
4 mins read

In today’s sports world, missing a crucial shot means more than a lost chance at a win or championship; your social media inboxes will likely be flooded with angry fans and sports bettors.

When those messages cross the line into harassment, where do athletes, coaches, and other sports-related employees turn? Sports integrity tech firm Integrity Compliance 360 (IC360) is trying to answer that question with Alert360, a new anonymous reporting system that allows athletes and others to file harassment complaints.

IC360 worked with RealResponse, a Charlotte-based firm that builds anonymous reporting platforms. IC360 CEO Matthew Holt said the new platform serves a dual purpose: protecting athletes, coaches and staff, and the integrity of athletics.

“The implementation of Alert360, powered by RealResponse, is another example of how we help our partners to stay one step ahead. An anonymous tip can help limit and prevent acts or threats of physical and emotional harm or intimidation while thwarting attempts to undermine the integrity of sports competitions.”

Key takeaways

  • Alert360 allows anonymous reports of harassment and illegal sports betting activity.
  • The tool should help curb harassment athletes face in the era of sports betting and social media.
  • During March Madness, female players faced three times the threats that male players received.
  • NCAA president Charlie Baker has called to end prop bets on college sports to protect athletes.

Alert360 will provide a safe place for reporting harassment, illegal gambling

The Alert360 platform allows athletes and others to file anonymous reports related to harassment and illegal betting. Reports can be made through a variety of channels, including:

  • QR codes
  • Web forms
  • Text messaging
  • Email

RealResponse Chief Operating Officer Scott Sadin described to PlayUSA what happens when a complaint enters the system.

Essentially, when someone files a report with Alert360, Ic360 will assess the report internally and decide what to do based on several factors. Sadin said:

“This decision will be based on the information provided in the initial report, the current agreement with the organization (which specifies whether the organization or IC360 will conduct the initial triage of reports), and the assessed threat of physical violence or harassment towards the organization, a member of the organization, or the reporting party.”

If IC360 needs more information, they’ll reach out to the reporting party through RealResponse. That dialogue is anonymous, Sadin noted.

“In almost all cases, IC360 will reach out again to the reporting party via RealResponse to collect more information,” he said. “The only exceptions to this rule would be reports that clearly do not pertain to integrity concerns, pose no potential threat of physical harm or harassment, or are solely related to mental health issues. In such cases, IC360 will notify the organization and will not initiate any investigative actions.”

Partnerships are on the horizon for Alert360

Sadin told PlayUSA that IC360 is speaking with “organizations that plan to implement their own version of Alert360.” He also pointed out that Lights Out Xtreme Fighting MMA recently announced a partnership with IC360 that includes using Alert360.

Lights Out CEO and former NFL linebacker Shawne Merriman said his company is excited to work with IC360.

“With IC360’s deep expertise and innovative technology, we can continue to provide our fans with the highest level of entertainment while maintaining the integrity of our sport,” Merriman said in a press release about the partnership.

Anonymous harassment reports come at the intersection of college athletics, sports betting

Fans harassing players for their performances is nothing new. However, the intensity and number of those acts have increased as social media and sports betting have grown.

The NCAA released a statement earlier this month highlighting the wave of harassment players are facing. “Harassment related to sports betting can cause serious harm to student-athlete mental health and well-being,” the NCAA said in its statement.

It went on to share sobering statistics about athlete harassment:

  • More than 540 abusive betting-related messages were directed at men’s and women’s basketball student-athletes, including death threats, during March Madness this year.
  • Women’s basketball student-athletes bore the brunt of the threats, receiving around three times more threats than their male counterparts.
  • Around 33% of high-profile college athletes get abusive messages about sports wagering.

The abuse isn’t directed at athletes, only, either.

“Game officials, administrators and other athletics employees have been harassed related to their respective involvement in competitions,” the NCAA noted.

NCAA boss calls for prop-bet ban

The issue has gotten so bad that, in March, NCAA president Charlie Baker called for an end to prop bets on college athletes. “Prop bets” refers to bets in which wagers are available for individual player performances such as points and rebounds in a game.

“The NCAA has been working with states to deal with these threats and many are responding by banning college prop bets,” Baker said in a statement posted on the NCAA PR department’s X account. “This week we will be contacting officials across the country in states that still allow these bets and ask them to…remove college prop bets from all betting markets.”

Ohio is one of the states that adopted the no-prop-bet rule for college sports. The state adopted the ban earlier this year.

J.R. Duren Avatar
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J.R. Duren has covered the gambling beats for more than a dozen states for Catena Media since 2015. His past reporting experience includes two years at the Villages Daily Sun, and he is a first-place winner at the Florida Press Club Excellence in Journalism Contest.

View all posts by J.R. Duren

J.R. Duren has covered the gambling beats for more than a dozen states for Catena Media since 2015. His past reporting experience includes two years at the Villages Daily Sun, and he is a first-place winner at the Florida Press Club Excellence in Journalism Contest.

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