Microsoft will stop renewing licenses for its products to Russian companies starting in October, the company said in a letter to customers. The move is part of the tech giant’s response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
Microsoft will no longer process payments via wire transfer to a local bank account for its services in Russia. Customers now have two months to find an alternative vendor. The company said it is taking this step “to comply with sanctions imposed against Russia.”
Microsoft’s decision is a major blow to Russian businesses, which rely heavily on the company’s software. Forbes Russia estimates that up to 90% of corporate clients in the country still use Microsoft products.
Without Microsoft software updates, Russian services will become more susceptible to cyberattacks, experts warn. The lack of alternatives will also encourage businesses to use pirated tools.
The Russian government is actively working on creating domestic technologies to replace popular Western products, but these alternatives are still in development and not widely adopted.
In addition to Microsoft, many other Western companies have cut ties with Russia since the invasion of Ukraine. These include Cisco, Google, and Apple. The Russian government has responded to these sanctions by blocking VPN services and other tools that could be used to circumvent them.
The sources for this piece include an article in TheRecord.