Russia Set to Block VPN Services Starting March 2024

Russia’s communications watchdog, Roskomnadzor, is set to implement a ban on Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) starting from March 1, 2024. 

This move was announced by Senator Artem Sheikin from the United Russia party, citing the necessity to restrict access to sites banned within Russia. The decision to block VPN services comes as a response to the increased demand for these services since Russia imposed restrictions on Western social media platforms following the Ukrainian crisis in February 2022.

Sheikin emphasized the importance of blocking VPN access to Meta Platforms, the company that owns Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp, which he referred to as an extremist organization. He noted that the ban would extend to VPN services that enable access to Instagram, one of the social media platforms banned in Russia.

Flashback: Russia Bans Major Media Sites Including Facebook, Twitter (March, 2022)

Efforts to obtain comments from Roskomnadzor regarding this development were met with a recorded message playing the song “Don’t Worry Be Happy.” 

Related: EU Designates X As A Leading Disinformation Source

This move to restrict VPNs represents a broader trend of tightening internet controls and censorship in Russia, as the government seeks to exert greater control over online information flow.

Information for this story was found via Reuters, X, and the sources and companies mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to the organizations discussed. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

Leave a Reply