Excellent John K. Kumi is a cryptocurrency and fintech enthusiast, operations manager of a fintech platform, writer, researcher, and a huge fan of creative writing. With an Economics background, he finds much interest in the invisible factors that causes price change in anything measured with valuation. He has been in the crypto/blockchain space in the last five (5) years. He mostly watches football highlights and movies in his free time.
Research conducted reveals that the order was based on the provisions of article 15.3 of Russia’s law on information, information technology, and information protection.
A record from Roskomnadzor, Russia’s internet censorship agency, discloses that Russia has blocked access to OKX, the world’s third-largest crypto exchange by volume. This, according to reports, was done by the order of the Prosecutor General’s Office. Research conducted reveals that the order was based on the provisions of article 15.3 of Russia’s law on information, information technology, and information protection. This article strongly protects against fake information, threats against financial organizations, calls for extremist activities, etc.
OKX “published information related to the activities of financial pyramids, as well as information on the provision of financial services by persons who do not have the right to provide them”, according to Roskomnadzor.
Another search on Roskomsvoboda, a local NGO that focuses on monitoring online censorship showed the exchange among the registry of its blocked addresses.
The only option available for Russian residents is a “virtual private network” (VPN). However, the administration of the OKX Russian-language Discord channel, according to a local report, has stated that they do not recommend the use of a VPN when accessing the website. This is because their risk controls can be triggered and can lead to the ban of their accounts.
In June 2020, Binance was also blocked by a local court in Russia. This was disclosed in a Facebook post by Binance’s regional head of Asia, Gleb Kostarev. Around that time, the exchange claimed to have found out about the blacklisting three months after implementation.
“Issuance and usage of bitcoins are fully decentralized, and there is no way to regulate it by the government, which contradicts the current Russian law,” said the court.
In January 2021, the ruling was overturned. The country has, since then, been working around the crypto space to come up with a regulatory framework. Whether or not crypto should be banned entirely from the country has been a bone of contention between the Bank of Russia and the Ministry of Finance.
In July, State Duma and President Vladimir Putin implemented a law to ban cryptos as a means of payment. However, the government has also opened its arms to accept the use of crypto for international trade. This was after the country was hit with several sanctions by Western countries.