Russian users will soon be unable to connect to the VPN service offered by Kaspersky.
The Moscow-based company has announced it is set to halt the operations and sales of its Secure Connection VPN, assuring users that the process will be staged gradually to have as little impact as possible.
The company’s free VPN version is set to be suspended from November 15 onwards, and paid customers will be able to subscribe until December 2022 and enjoy the service up till the end of 2023.
Russia VPNs facing growing pressures
The company announced the details of the shutdown in a blog post (opens in new tab), explaining, “the situation is completely similar with Kaspersky Secure Connection, which is part of various integrated solutions for home users.”
This means that for any users who have already paid for its security bundle, the application will be available until the subscription expires, and vice versa – so those using its free option have just a few days to look into alternatives.
Kaspersky further pointed out that this decision will apply for people in Russia only.
“The Russian-language version of the application will still be available on Kaspersky Lab websites and mobile app stores. For users outside of Russia, the set of available features and VPN servers will not change.”
TechRadar Pro has reached out to Kaspersky asking the reason behind this move, but a company’s spokesperson said there’s nothing else they can say about the decision at this time.
What’s certain is that the Kremlin has been actively fighting against Russia VPNs for a while now.
Last year, the country’s telecommunication watchdog Roskomnadzor banned some of the top VPN providers around. These include some of the biggest names on the market like ExpressVPN, NordVPN and IPVanish.
And while the use of such security services soared among Russians following the war in Ukraine, authorities have reaffirmed the intention to block VPN software that violate Russian law by granting access to illegal content.
At the same time, providers that don’t comply with the requirement to connect to the Federal State Information System – which enable state censorship and control of users’ activities – will also be pushed to leave the country.
More recent is the Roskomnadzor’s order (opens in new tab) to state-owned companies to share details over their use of VPN services.
Via BleepingComputer (opens in new tab)