Microsoft suspends all sales and services in Russia | Science and technology news
Microsoft has announced that it is suspending all new sales of its products and services in Russia.
In a blog post Friday, the company said: “Like the rest of the world, we are appalled, angry and saddened by the images and news emerging from the war Ukraine and condemn this unjustified, unprovoked and unlawful invasion Russia.”
Microsoft said “many aspects of our business” have been halted in accordance with Government sanctions against Russia and that it “worked in lockstep with the governments of the United States, the European Union and the United Kingdom”.
Fears over nuclear reactor shelled by Russia – live updates from Ukraine
Microsoft’s decision follows Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister Mykhailo Federov, who wrote a letter to Xbox and PlayStation to block Russian and Belarusian gamers to put pressure on the Kremlin.
It is not clear how the ban on new sales of products and services will affect ongoing services in Russia such as Xbox Live.
Brad Smith, the company’s president and vice chairman, said the company is and will continue to expose and advise the Ukrainian government on cyberattacks on the country’s digital infrastructure.
“We continue to work proactively to help cybersecurity officials in Ukraine defend against Russian attacks, most recently a cyberattack on a major Ukrainian broadcaster,” the blog reads.
“Since the beginning of the war, we have countered Russian positioning, destructive or destructive actions against more than 20 Ukrainian government, IT and financial sector organizations.
“We also countered cyberattacks targeting several other civilian locations. We have publicly expressed our concern that these attacks against civilians violate the Geneva Convention,” it said.
Read more: How are the big tech companies reacting to the invasion of Ukraine?
The company had already removed RT news apps from the Windows App Store and de-ranked RT and Sputnik on its Bing search engine.
Mr Smith said Microsoft has teams working with the International Committee of the Red Cross as well as “several UN agencies to help refugees by providing technology and financial support to key NGOs”.
“When necessary, we defend these groups from ongoing cyberattacks,” the blog post added.
“As a company, we are committed to the safety of our employees in Ukraine and are in constant contact with them to offer many forms of support, including to those who have had to flee for their life or safety.
“Like so many others, we stand with Ukraine in our call to restore peace, respect Ukraine’s sovereignty and protect its people.”