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Online Gambling In Russia - Legality And Practices

Both online and land-based gambling is totally banned in the whole of Russia but land-based gambling is given an exception in four regions of the country. Initially, in 1928, there was no form of gambling allowed but this changed during the late 1980s. In 1988, slot machines were allowed to operate in some locations and in the following year, the gambling ban was completely lifted. This paved way for land-based casinos which saw over 50 of them operating in Moscow by the year 2002.

Though there were little regulations to govern gambling activities as it gained fame, the government took some steps to control it. Online gambling was only acceptable until 2006 when the government passed a law against any form of online gambling. However, most of these sites continued to offer gambling services despite the legislation.

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Russian Supreme Court rulings concluded that internet service providers were to block all sites run by the online gambling operators. This was in efforts to restrict Russians from accessing online gambling services. In 2012, the Roskomnadzor was released to the public. It consisted of all the sites that the Russian government deemed illegal and some domain names owned by international gambling operators.

What the Law Means to the Citizens

The Russian anti-gambling laws state that anyone who chooses to gamble online is breaking the law. On the contrary, you are unlikely to face a prosecution prospect if you gamble online. The government has the right to prosecute you, but they seem to focus on hunting down those who facilitate online gambling instead of those who take part in it. Apart from ISP blocking overseas gambling sites, no domestic operator is allowed to offer online gambling services. This is what makes it hard to gamble online when in Russia. Nonetheless, not all gambling sites are on the ISPs blacklist.

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Online Gambling Product Types In Russia

Online gambling in Russia is only acceptable if it is in the form of interactive betting. This includes simulators of things like casino games, card games and slot machines among others. Apart from betting, there are some licenced sites that offer lottery, bingo and poker services.

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Online Betting In Russia

This has been illegal for a long time but things are changing; there is a good number of sportsbooks that have recently been licensed to operate. The only licensed sports betting operators in Russia are Trade House Stoloto, the Russian lottery company and Liga Stavok. However, the Russian authorities have been vigorously blocking and blacklisting most of the unlicensed online bookmakers. There are also efforts to block financial transactions between unlicensed sites and the users.

The authorities also proposed a bill establishing punishment for players found betting at any of the unlicensed sites both on land and online. The effort that is to be applied in prosecuting the offenders is not yet known, but it is clear that enforcing the rules will be a great challenge to the authorities.

Bookmakers
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Why?
Mobile
Esport
Bonus
Official Website
9.7 /10
  • Many Different Bonus Offers
  • Huge Market Coverage
  • Competitive Odds
7.9 /10
  • Android and iOS Apps Available
  • Comprehensive Sports Coverage
  • In-depth Statistics On Hand
7.8 /10
  • Excellent Live Betting Coverage
  • Comprehensive Stats & Analytics
  • 600 Sporting Events Every Day
7.8 /10
  • Over One Million Customers
  • Leading Russian Bookmaker
  • Eastern European Sports Specialist
7.8 /10
  • Vast Variety of Sports and Markets
  • Coverage of Esports Games
  • High Coefficients

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Online Casinos In Russia

There is no legally operating online casino in Russia. Most of the big foreign casino operators’ domains are listed on the media authority, in the Roskomnadzor. These domains are completely banned by ISPs throughout the country. This legislation makes it hard for players to access the sites. Gaming online is, theoretically, punishable by a fine. Anyway, there are few chances of individual players being caught since the authorities mainly aim their efforts shots at operators.

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Online Poker Rooms In Russia

Despite the fact that there are no online poker rooms in Russia, Russians still have access to some of the online poker rooms. Some internet service providers are allowing citizens to access those services but such sites can still be accessed through open DNS servers. The servers include Google’s Public DNS which the Russian government has no control over the activities taking place on it. This is one of the main reasons why the government finds it hard to completely ban or control online gambling in Russia. Overseas online poker rooms also offer a big opportunity for Russian citizens to gamble as they can be accessed by anyone through the public DNS servers.

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Lottery In Russia

Lotteries are not considered gambling from the definition of Russian Gambling Law’s and are governed independently. The lottery is described as a game conducted in accordance with an agreement in which the operator holds a draw for a prize pool of the whole lottery while the participant deserves to receive the winnings only if they win pursuant to the terms and conditions of the lottery.

The Russian lotto is allowed for whole families to play and compete during the drawing. The winner usually has to have the highest number of lines, cards and the whole lottery ticket complete. Stoloto.ru offers an online platform for people to register and acquire lottery tickets. The lotto can also be played by text where the player sends a specific text to a certain number in order to buy a ticket.

Online Bingo In Russia

There a few bingo games reportedly exempted from the 2006 ban, and some country-wide lottery bingo games still operate to date. One of the most sought-after of the bingo games are those offered by Bingo Boom (the main Russian lottery institution) and the Trade House Stoloto (a state lottery operator). These bingo games can be accessed online. Despite allowing online access, foreign bingo sites are not allowed to operate in Russia. Most of the foreign sites are blocked by the ISPs in Russia.