Microsoft ceases cloud services in Russia amid Western sanctions

  • Microsoft is set to halt cloud services for Russian users this week, in line with sanctions imposed by Western nations, prompting the need for data backups advised through a Telegram channel.
  • Russian IT company Softline’s Elena Volotovskaya revealed that Microsoft had forewarned clients with a letter earlier this month, urging Russian businesses to transition to local service providers amidst the impending withdrawal of global cloud services, led by Microsoft, with Amazon and Google soon to follow.
  • Russian firms prepared for the withdrawal of Western cloud services, initiated by the 12th sanctions package in December 2023, which also saw exclusion from the SWIFT network and the departure of major payment service providers like Visa and MasterCard.

Later this week, Microsoft will cease offering cloud services to users in Russia as a component of the sanctions implemented by Western countries against the nation.

Microsoft Cloud halts services

To assist its customers, the firm has created a special Telegram channel, advising that everyone create backups of their data as quickly as possible.

According to Elena Volotovskaya, vice president of investments at Softline, a Russian IT business, she stated that a warning letter was sent early this month to all Microsoft clients.

Additionally, Volotovskaya stated that local businesses should, if they haven’t already, move to local service providers and that other large global cloud providers, including Amazon and Google, would soon follow Microsoft’s lead for the same reason.

Also read: Microsoft the latest to waive cloud egress fees

Also read: 7 cloud computing trends that will define 2024

Sanction package impacts

This news should not come as a surprise in Russia. Russian companies had about three months to be ready for the unavoidable as the 12th sanctions package, which includes the withdrawal of Western cloud services, was enacted on December 19, 2023.

The largest hit to the Russian market came from the exclusion from the SWIFT financial transaction processing network. Visa and MasterCard, the two largest card and payment service providers, have also left the market.


Sylvia Shen

Sylvia Shen, a news reporter at BTW media dedicated in Fintech and Blockchain. She graduated from University of California, Davis. Send tips to

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