Russian Minister Outlines Difficulties In ISP-Blocking Strategy (Update)

By Brian Cullingworth, Last updated Oct 27, 2017

Russian Minister Outlines Difficulties In Isp-Blocking Strategy (Update)

Telecommunications regulator Roskomnadzor may be struggling to keep up with technological workarounds

The Russian telecommunications regulator Roskomnadzor has become notorious in the online gambling industry for its prolific use of ISP-blocking, but statements by the Minister of Communications, Nikolai Nikiforov, this week indicate that the watchdog may be struggling to combat rapid advances in technology that are enabling bolder operators and players to find workarounds.

Russian media reports on Nikiforov’s report to the Russian Duma are that he feels that current blocking tactics “…will not allow us to achieve the desired result, and technology will always be promptly designed for each lock, allowing it to be circumvented” and are therefore not really viable.

The minister’s solution is apparently to go after users by monitoring their searches for “this or that information” and how they access illegal content.

Whilst Nikiforov did not go into detail, there have been recent developments that suggest a tougher government approach will be implemented: Russian president Vladimir Putin has already signed off on new measures restricting the use of virtual private networks and similar workaround technologies; Roskomnadzor has negotiated an agreement with Russian search engines with a view to frustrating attempts by Russian punters to find gambling information, and has assembled a special department to ensure Russian online laws are obeyed.


Brian Cullingworth

Infopowa news was a staple of Casinomeister’s news from 2000 until 2019. Brian Cullingworth was the main writer, contributor, and was one of the most knowledgeable persons I have ever known involved in the online casino industry.

We first met in January 2001 at the ICE in London where I observed him going booth to booth interviewing online casino, software, and licensing jurisdiction representatives. Brian was also heavily involved with our forum as “Jetset“, he was involved as an informal consultant to eCOGRA, the OPA, and was a player advocate who assisted countless aggrieved players with his connections to industry folks. He also published “Casino Cautions” via Infopowa news for quite a number of years. These can be found in our news archives.

His passing in February 2019 was a dark day for us. He will be forever missed.

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