Russia bans VPN providers that allow gambling

The way Russia treats the internet is akin to how China does it. While up to recently the internet had been a more or less free resource within the country, today the government considers it a “danger”. Using the excuse that terrorists use it to organize their acts, the Russian government has successfully set up filters, over the past few years, that would allow only what the government wants to be seen by the people to pass through the filters. This has proven to be a good way to spur some of the people in Russia to start using VPNs in order to allow them to browse unfiltered content.

Now, the Russian government has decided to prevent around nine VPN services from working in the country because they refuse to connect their services to the filter. This ban will also be affecting online gambling and, according to, the way eSports betting happens in the country. This might end up being a problem for a lot of people in the country. eSports are extremely popular within the country, and a ban on VPN might mean a huge decrease in traffic going into foreign eSports websites.

A problem for two sides

This might pose a problem for eSports within the country. While Russia has a large number of operators and eSports betting companies itself, the majority of the eSports betting industry originates outside of the country. That is also where the majority of the traffic from the country goes when looking to bet on eSports. With a VPN ban, some of these sites might end up being banned (for being online gambling websites) which will result in a drop in the number of customers for the websites, something that the online gambling venues might not take too kindly to. Furthermore, there is the possibility that this might be affecting the locals as well.

The industry within the country is quite well developed. There are many websites that offer eSports gambling services, but not all of them are able to offer gambling services on all international or even local championships. This might cause the Russians who are fans of eSports betting to suffer and not enjoy the experience much, anymore.

An opportunity for some

On the other hand, it might also turn out to be the spur that the local eSports websites need in order to get better at their services. A number of championships are actually coming to Russia right now. These are all privately held competitions that receive millions of views from locals and international fans. If the companies that supply betting opportunities to the interested play their cards right, they will be able to capture the market that is currently looking for alternative ways to bet internationally. A number of these people will, of course, move organically to the websites, while others will need to be convinced. The best way to convince them is to offer a service that is superior to the one that had been offered previously. It might take some work, but the resources and the growing number of users are there, the only thing required is the effort to capture these users.

Banning VPN services for refusing to work with the local filtering systems is a violation of the companies’ rights to do as they wish, but it is also an opportunity for those who want to start working harder and earning more money through offering gambling services on eSports. One man’s loss is another man’s opportunity, as they say in the world of business.

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