Fri. May 20th, 2022

Slack has begun to shut down in compliance with international sanctions

Slack messenger began disconnecting Russian users from the platform on Tuesday, in compliance with international sanctions on Russia in the wake of the attack on Ukraine, as well as the policies of its parent company, Salesforce.

It was reported that several organizations have been entirely disconnected from their accounts without prior notice and any opportunity to restore their data. The issue has mostly affected organizations that were directly sanctioned in connection with Russia’s actions in Ukraine.

Slack is required to take action to comply with sanctions regulations in the U.S. and other countries where we operate, including in some circumstances suspending accounts without prior notice, as mandated by law,” the company said in a statement to Axios

We are in contact with affected customers regarding the impact of these actions on their account status, where permitted by law,” the statement continues.

Slack, which is part of a larger corporate software company, Salesforce, is obliged to comply with its policies, which require the ceasing of cooperation with Russian clients as an act of support for Ukraine, the company announced last week on their official website.

We are heartbroken by the violence and loss of life due to the invasion of Ukraine. We stand in solidarity with the Ukrainian people and we are hopeful for an expedient path to peace. While we do not have offices or employees in the region, we are supporting our employees who have loved ones there… We do not have a material business in Russia. Through resellers and other channels we have a very small number of Russia-based customers, and we began exiting those relationships last week,” the company stated last Monday. 

It was also confirmed that Slack is not deleting data transferred by Russian customers, but the affected companies won’t be able to access it unless the sanctions are lifted, or the parent company’s policies are changed.

Moscow attacked its neighbor in late February, following a seven-year standoff over Ukraine’s failure to implement the terms of the Minsk agreements, and Russia’s recognition of the Donbass republics in Donetsk and Lugansk. Russia has demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country. Kiev insists the Russian offensive was completely unprovoked and has denied claims it was planning to retake the two republics by force.

In retaliation for the attack, the international community has imposed severe economic sanctions on Russian officials and organizations, while many international companies are leaving Russia due to the financial risks or as an act of protest against the offensive.