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The 2018 World Cup is almost upon us, and thousands of football fans will be descending on Russia for the global spectacle. The more complex answer is that it is completely legal in the four authorized zones of the Altai Krai, Krasnodar Krai, Kaliningrad Oblast, and Primorsky Krai regions after a new gambling bill was introduced back in 2009. State-run lotteries and sportsbooks are legal across the whole of Russia.

A large quantity of these fans will no doubt be keen to enjoy a gamble during their time away but many are unsure on the country’s gambling laws. OK, so let’s start with the most important question. There are only a limited number of sportsbooks that operate in Russia with Leon, Liga Stavok, 888.ru, Winline, and 1x Stavka leading the way.

In November 2017, Bwin officially entered the Russian market operated by Digital Betting and powered by GVC Holdings.

Unfortunately, online gambling is banned in Russia.

There remains an argument that poker does not fall under these laws because it can be labelled as a game of skill.

Casino games online have been outlawed since April 2017.

Russian gamblers have still been able to take advantage of a loophole by accessing foreign-based online betting sites.

However, the government has taken steps to deal with this issue by demanding ISPs block gambling-related websites to all Russian-based devices.