Illegal online casinos and bookmakers in Russia actually stopped working due to problems with accepting payments. Bitcoin is the only payment method available to them.
Russian-oriented illegal bookmakers and online casinos have lost the ability to accept payments using bank cards and payment services, The Bell reports. This was the result of the struggle of the Russian Central Bank with the market for payments to illegal casinos, which intensified at the end of 2020.
Journalists at The Bell tried to deposit bets at the largest online casinos, but they all only accept bitcoins. At the same time, the sites of such online casinos as Admiral777, JoyCasino, Admiral888, Gaminator and others do not indicate the termination of accepting payments using bank cards. But when one tries to pay, the system says that “this payment method is not available for payment in your region.” The Bell correspondent checked the possibility of replenishing the deposit through most popular Russian banks, such as Sberbank, Tinkoff, and accounts in telecom operators Megafon and Beeline, as well as YuMoney payment service, and all attempts were unsuccessful.
Azino777, a large illegal online casino focused on the Russian market, is one of those ones that removed the possibility of paying with bank cards and other methods and now offers only bitcoin transfers. Small online casinos even ceased operations, most likely due to the cessation of the flow of user money.
“Of course, you can pay with bitcoins and be an old client who will be taken cash, but this is not a systemic business,” The Bell cites one of its anonymous sources in the gambling industry. “All the big guys have curtailed their activities or switched to a license if they are bookmakers. All our clients closed [deals with] Russia in December.”