Why Is LinkedIn Now Officially Blocked In Russia?

Russia's communications regulators have officially blocked LinkedIn in their country. A local court previously found the social networking company guilty of violating the country's data storage law. LinkedIn failed to store their users' personal data on Russia's servers.

LinkedIn's Failed Compliance

Russia had passed new rules of its data storage law last year, according to The New York Times. LinkedIn made a costly mistake by failing to comply. The country's communications regulator Roskomnadzor has already started to impose the said ban. This rare occurrence for the company is warranted by Moscow's court decision.

The law in Russian requires tech companies to store any personal data of their users in the country's national servers. According to TechCrunch, Russia claims that their data storage law will protect Russian user's personal data. But this is contrary to what many have in mind. These localized servers are being exploited by the Russian government.

Why LinkedIn?

The problem with banning LinkedIn in Russia lies on the fact that users have to deal with it. The most troubling part of is the fate of other sites that are still being accessed in the country like Facebook and Twitter. They would likely have to start hosting data within Russia if they have not yet. Otherwise, they will end up like LinkedIn.

The government does seem to take this seriously. Apparently, the company tried to negotiate with the Russian regulators. TechCrunch further reports that LinkedIn was supposed to meet with the regulators and remained hopeful. However, the eventual result suggests that it did not push through.

The company's spokesperson Anoek Eckhardt said in a statement that the Roskomnadzor's action denies access to millions of LinkedIn members in Russia. In addition, companies will also suffer since they would be denied to use LinkedIn in growing their businesses. Though it is still interested in meeting with the Russian regulator to discuss the request for data localization.

LinkedIn is being acquired by tech giant Microsoft for $26.2 billion. The deal is expected to be finalized by the end of 2016.

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