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Some Russian bank customers have been disconnected from Apple Pay and Google Pay

Some Russian bank customers have been disconnected from Apple Pay and Google Pay

According to an insider report, customers of several banks in Russia cannot use their bank cards with Google Pay and Apple Pay due to the recent financial restrictions imposed in the country. According to a press release from the Central Bank of Russia, affected financial institutions include VTB Group, Sovcombank, Novicombank, Promsvazbank and Otkrity FC Bank.

While customers can still use bank cards of these institutions within Russia, they will no longer work abroad or when making online payments for stores and services belonging to countries that have issued sanctions on Russia. It also includes card payments via Apple Pay and Google Pay, although the central bank says contactless payments will still be available with bank cards, provided they support it.

Google and Apple did not immediately respond to The Verge's request for comment.

Google Pay and Apple Pay are not as popular in Russia as they are in the US. According to data recorded in 2020, Russia's most popular mobile payment service was Russian-owned Sberbank Online, followed by YooMoney (formerly Yandex Money) and QIWI, two other Russian payment service providers. At the time, 29 percent of Russians reported using Google Pay, while 20 percent used Apple Pay.

After the invasion of Ukraine, many countries have imposed financial sanctions on Russia. According to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, EU-issued sanctions target 70 percent of Russia's banking network. The US has imposed sanctions on two of Russia's biggest financial institutions, Sberbank and VTB Bank, while the UK has frozen the assets of five Russian banks.

As nations block Russia from SWIFT (Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication), the financial system used to communicate transactions around the world, the US, EU and UK impose sanctions directly on Russian President Vladimir Putin.

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