Back on November 27th 2017 , the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin, signed a Federal Law Bill No. 244 that states that payments by cards in favor of foreign institutions involved in the organization and conduct of gambling are prohibited. This law has now begun to take effect. According to a Russian news site, Rambler, Sberbank is now blocking all transactions made to gambling sites.
Some players got an SMS saying:“According to the Federal Law No. 244, from 10/19/18, card payments are not available in favor of foreign institutions involved in the organization and conduct of gambling.”
This law is enforced only for offshore online gambling operators. Some of the blocked sites include major ones like PokerStars, partypoker, 888poker, Unibet, Bet365, William Hill, Winamax
There is a tax in Russia attached to gambling transactions, however this isn't the case when using offshore sites. Therefore, a lot of players are avoiding these taxes, this is a detriment to local gambling operators and the government.
We will soon see how this will affect Russian players who wish to play on popular gambling platforms like PokerStars.