Russia Bans Cash Deposits to Anonymous Online Wallets

Russia Bans Cash Deposits to Anonymous Online Wallets

August 4, 2020

Russia has imposed a ban on all cash deposits on anonymous electronic wallets as its latest push to curb illegal financial activities, including drug trades and terror financing.

As reported by local news publication RBC, the new law will impact around 10 million Russians using online wallets like Yandex.Money, QIWI-Wallet WebMoney, PayPal, VK Pay, and a few more.

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Any cash deposits on these platforms will be ceased, leaving the users to only make top-ups with bank transfers, meaning then need to identify themselves by linking bank accounts. This will allow the authorities to know the source of the funds.

Transport and travel cards are covered under this new law and people even need to make online transactions for sending money to metro cards.

The law came as an amendment to the national payments system. Though passed by the State Duma last year, the law has been imposed after a year giving the wallet platforms 12 months to adapt business processes accordingly.

“These changes have been made in order to minimize the risks of transactions with anonymous cards and electronic wallets,” a representative of the country’s central bank told the local publication.

Impact on cryptocurrencies

Though the law did not specifically mention cryptocurrencies, many experts believe that this might impact digital currency transactions as well. However, some are still optimistic and think this will only extend to the exchanges and wallets that are not compliant to the Russian laws.

Notably, many people in Russia use online wallets to purchase digital currencies.

Meanwhile, Russia also brought a new law recently, clarifying its stance and defining crypto. Already signed by President Vladimir Putin, the law sees digital assets as property and bans their usage as a mode of payment.

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