Russia steps up illegal bookmaker crackdown

Russian communications watchdog Roskomnadzor has intensified its efforts in blocking illegal gaming-related websites in the country, local media reports. 

This time, targets include not only online poker rooms, online casinos, bookmaking websites, but Russian news and analytical web portals, such as Championat, Bookmakers’ Rating and some others.

The latest onslaught on gaming websites started on June, 21, which has resulted in over 800 websites being blocked since then. 

In an interview with Russian publication News of Gambling, Alexei Tkachuk, Bookmakers’ Rating editor in chief said the moves have been linked with Russia’s plans to introduce ten percent tax on proceeds of bookmakers and totes.

By hampering the work of offshore bookmakers in Russia, bookmakers officially registered through TSUPIS will be able to benefit from offshore bookmakers’ lost customers, said Tkachuk.

It is “for the benefit of [Russian bookmaking community], as it facilitates competition in the Internet – the share occupied by the leaders of the world’s bookmaking business on the Russian market will soon be reduced,” he predicted.