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Gambling Laws in Russia


By oncasinositePublished 9 months ago 4 min read

Russia is a global economic superpower and one of the most important countries in the world. Unlike its American and British counterparts, the country still has a negative view of gambling.

There are obvious economic benefits from it since all casinos are liable to heavy taxation. However, different countries have different opinions on it and Russia has a valid point for having gambling banned. Russia isn’t a gambling-friendly nation.

Legislation passed in 2006 banned online gambling while legislation passed in 2009 banned all forms of gambling across the nation except in four designated zones.

Nevertheless, Russians continue to gamble online at unlicensed offshore operators. It is still possible to place bets online in Russia; it just isn’t easy. The Russian ISP blacklist does a pretty thorough job of filtering websites that offer real money games to Russians.

That list was updated again in 2014 and it now includes the likes of 온라인카지노, Party Poker, Full Tilt, Intertops, and many other big names in poker and gambling. The gambling operations in Russia are kept under the strict control of the country’s government in 4 regions.

All gambling operations are land-based and all forms of gambling online are prohibited. Bookmakers’ offices and totalisators can operate anywhere as long as they have a license. Finally, since it’s state-operated the lottery is legal. Individual Russians face little risk in placing bets over the internet.

There are laws on the books that stipulate a small fine for being caught gambling online, but it appears that there’s little interest in pursuing individual gamblers. Russian authorities are focused more on those who run gambling sites and underground betting parlors.

The biggest issue you’ll face is finding a way about the ISP blacklist. As we mentioned above, the blacklist is thorough and updated regularly. Players have reported that the block does not yet apply to poker software. If you already have the PokerStars software, for example, you can still access the games and play for real money.

A 2012 Russian Supreme Court ruling shows just how serious the country is about eradicating gambling. In a case that found it illegal to even provide information about gambling, the court commented that “no trace of gambling should remain on the web.”

We urge all Russian gamblers to keep an eye on the news. There appear to be few risks in simply gambling online right now, but that could change. Russia has shown us time and again that it very much wants to completely eliminate online gambling.

Russia has been struggling with the legality of gambling since the early 21st century. When it was a part of the Soviet Union gambling was banned due to it being an idle and bourgeois pastime. It was entirely prohibited on May 8, 1928, and republics within the Union were ordered to take measures against it.

As the Union started to crumble gambling started to become popular again. As an experiment, the first slot machines were allowed in Russia but only in hotels part of the USSR State Committee of Foreign Tourism.

As the experiment started getting a good result on August 23rd, 1989 the ban was lifted followed by the first casino being opened the same year. Poker became a popular game and tournaments were even organized but didn’t get widespread attention.

Years passed and the Internet became a thing it wasn’t long for the first online gambling sites to be introduced. So far playing casino games and betting on land had been perfectly legal but when online casinos and sportsbooks emerged the government felt that it needed to take control.

This is why in 2006 the government voted on a law that prohibited all kinds of online betting and gambling. Despite the ban. Russian players were welcome at most gambling sites since they were avid online gamblers

Casino Games that Legal in Russia

Poker - Land-based poker and online poker is illegal in Russia. Major poker operators are blocked by Russian ISPs, a law that does not effectively apply at the level of individual players.

Bingo - Bingo is legal in Russia, and bingo games are also available online. Foreign bingo online operators cannot legally offer bingo games to Russian players.

Lottery - The lottery is legal in Russia, but is monopolized by the state lottery, it offers players lotteries and scratch cards, and these games are also available online.

Sports betting - Sports betting is legal in Russia, and there are also sports betting companies for licenses in Russia, they provide land-based sports betting services to Russian sports betting players.


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