Kaspersky VPN Services Shutting Down in Russia Next Week As Pressure Against VPNs Continues

By Spencer Hulse Spencer Hulse has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team
Published on November 11, 2022

Kaspersky VPN services are shutting down in Russia: The war between Russia and Ukraine has seen many things happen and has impacted various markets, especially the energy and food markets. In addition, many companies have chosen to withdraw from Russia, curtailing operations even if it costs them money. Now, Kaspersky VPN services are set to join those who have halted operations in Russia.

What is Kaspersky VPN? Kaspersky VPN security is a way for people to browse the internet in a secure way. It provides privacy, security, and freedom to its users, and it is compatible with most major operating systems.

When will the services stop? Kaspersky VPN services are set to come to a halt next week. It will begin with the free version, which will begin its suspension on November 15th. The discontinuation of its paid services will be more gradual in an attempt to reduce the impact as much as possible.

  • Paid customers have the ability to purchase a subscription until December 2022, allowing them to retain Kaspersky VPN services until the end of 2023, assuming they pay for the full year.
  • The same situation is taking place with its security bundle, which will also allow users to continue using the subscription until it expires. However, once it does, it will no longer be available to users in Russia.
  • Despite no longer being available in Russia, the Russian-language version will still be available for those living outside of the country.

Why the move is surprising: Kaspersky is a Russian multinational cybersecurity company. It is based in Moscow. Therefore, it comes as more of a surprise that it is choosing not to offer its VPN services in Russia. However, there is more to the story than the war.

Russian VPNs are facing pressure: While there has been no definitive response from Kaspersky on why it made this decision, there has certainly been pressure on Russian VPN companies. Just last year, Russia blocked some of the top VPN services.

The move was made by Roskomnadzor, a Russian federal agency that supervises communications. It suggested that the services could be used to access banned content, but there are differing opinions. Bloomberg suggested it had something to do with parliamentary elections.

  • There have been a number of actions against tech companies by Roskomnadzor, which has targeted giants such as Google and Apple.
  • ExpressVPN and NordVPN, two of the largest VPN providers, are among those that have been affected by the bans.

Censorship demands: One of the things the Russian government wanted the banned companies to do was connect their services to the FGIS database. By doing so, it would apply government censorship to the connections and subject them to state scrutiny.

  • The actions are part of an increasing stranglehold on VPN services. It even extends to state-owned companies, which are supposed to declare the VPNs they use, including the where and why.
  • Roskomnadzor also plans to implement an AI-based scanner in the near future to analyze new information that appears online.

There are not many alternatives left: Between the bans and the departure of Kaspersky VPN and similar services, Russians are left with few trustworthy options. Those that are left might be subject to the censorship demands discussed above, which goes against the privacy and security VPNs are meant to provide.

Despite the hostility, people want VPNs: All of this is occurring during a period when more people are turning to VPNs than ever before. VPN apps have exploded in popularity in Russia, with downloads increasing by 1,200% in March. The use includes Russian officials as well, with a desire for secure communications being felt across the board.

By Spencer Hulse Spencer Hulse has been verified by Muck Rack's editorial team

Spencer Hulse is the Editorial Director at Grit Daily. He is responsible for overseeing other editors and writers, day-to-day operations, and covering breaking news.

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