We brought a report on the activities of FCA-regulated e-money institution PayDo a few weeks ago, analyzing Similarweb data for their website. We found that the number of visitors from Russia exploded in August and September 2022, despite the Western sanctions. The Russian dimension is interesting because PayDo is controlled by Ukrainians, and Russia is a war adversary. PayDo heavily criticized the report but blocked the website for Russian visitors. Now, website traffic is plummeting.
The Similarweb Tool
Similarweb is the leading analytics platform for website traffic and provides reliable data for analysis with its AI-powered evaluations. In this respect, Similarweb is a viable tool for FinTelegram to analyze websites. PayDo has questioned Similarweb’s data in their comments to FinTelegram. That is their right.
The PayDo statement points out that they comply with Western sanctions and would not process payments for Russian customers. They would not have opened any accounts for Russian customers from mid-February when the Western Sanctions began. Existing accounts of Russians would have been closed.
PayDo has blocked Russian visitors to avoid confusing similarweb statistics, since some of ecommerce merchants were trying to push RU traffic to us, while all payments were declined and 0 shopper accounts were opened, still redirects to our pages caused the wrong similarweb picture.PayDo statement
PayDo informed FinTelegram that after our report was published, they blocked the website for Russian visitors to avoid misunderstandings. This Russian block can be seen now in the new Similarweb data. However, it also resulted in a decrease in website visitors. The number has plummeted from around 164,000 in September to 108,000 over the last 28 days.
The PayDo Defamation
We shared our PayDo report on Twitter. Our tweet was re-tweeted by several Twitter users. PayDo contacted some of these Twitter users and claimed that the report was wrong. Moreover, they said FinTelegram would have contacted PayDo and demanded money to delete the report. This is, of course, complete bullshit and defamation.
Upon our inquiry, PayDo provided us with an email they received from the email address [email protected]. In it, the sender claims that they have internal information from PayDo that would be made public if not contacted immediately. This information would go beyond what FinTelegram had already disclosed. PayDo apparently has problems there. We are sorry for them!
However, we do not understand why FinTelegram is defamed because of PayDo‘s problems with someone who claims to have leaked data. Currently, this defamation lies with the FinTelegram lawyers.
The Open Questions
However, the question arises why visitors from Russia had by far the highest visit duration, with just under 40 minutes in August and just under 16 minutes in September. The average visit duration across all website visitors was just 6 minutes. These visit duration for Russian visitors suggests they have been doing something on the payment processor’s website.
If you have any information about PayDo and its activities, please share it with us through our whistleblower system, Whistle42.