Roskomnadzor, the Russian media and communications regulator, has restricted access to the website of Okx, a leading cryptocurrency exchange. The trading platform was one of those that did not restrict access for Russians amid sanctions affecting the industry’s business in Russia.
Okx was blacklisted at the request of the Russian Prosecutor’s Office for spreading prohibited information
Known as Roskomnadzor, Russia’s Federal Service for Supervision of Telecommunications, Information Technology, and Mass Media this week added the domain name of the crypto exchange Okx to a list of sites containing information banned for distribution in the Russian Federation. The move follows a decision by the Russian Prosecutor’s Office.
The Seychelles-based company is one of the few major coin trading platforms that has not introduced restrictions for Russian users, despite growing Western sanctions imposed in the wake of Russia’s military incursion into Ukraine, Russian business news portal RBC noted in a report.
Russian prosecutors asked the telecommunications watchdog agency to prevent access to its website due to “the dissemination of unreliable and socially significant information of a financial nature,” Roskomnadzor told RBC Crypto. The agency’s press service further elaborated.
The site published information related to the activities of the financial pyramid and to the provision of financial services by persons who do not have the right to provide financial services in accordance with the laws of the Russian Federation.
Okx, which lists about 350 digital assets with a daily trading volume of about $1.5 billion, has yet to comment. However, Russian legal experts have noted that in the absence of a comprehensive legal framework, any exchange in Russia could be blocked. According to Daniil Gorkov, a lawyer with the Criminal Defense Office, this would deal an irreparable blow to the country’s crypto market.
Roskomnadzor has a history of taking down crypto-related websites; in September 2020, Binance, the world’s largest crypto trading platform, was blocked for some time. Popular exchange aggregator Bestchange.ru has been blacklisted several times, and crypto news outlets have also been targeted. In each of these cases, prosecutors were unable to convince the courts and the restrictions were later lifted.
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