It was a dull affair with few scoring chances until the final stages when South Korea and Russia struck within six minutes of one another.
The Koreans took a fortuitous lead at the 68-minute mark when Lee Keun-Ho's shot from distance was bobbled by Russian goalkeeper Igor Akinfeev and turned into the back of the net.
It seemed as though the crippling nature of the howler would leave Russia with no way back, but Fabio Capello inserted veteran striker Aleksandr Kerzhakov in the 71st minute in a managerial masterstroke.
Kerzhakov made an instant impact on the game by leveling the score in the 74th minute, capitalizing on a scramble inside the six-yard box to turn in a loose ball as the Koreans failed to clear their lines.
There was a hint of a hand ball in the build-up to the goal, but the equalizer was allowed to stand and Russia left the Arena Pantanal with a valuable point.
The result sees South Korea and Russia fall two points back of Belgium for the Group H lead.
Both nations will return to action on Sunday with South Korea taking on Algeria at the Estadio Beira-Rio and Russia squaring off with Belgium at the Maracana.