Moscow: The Kremlin on Wednesday urged Russian companies to develop alternatives to Zoom. A lawmaker warned that Zoom may be blocked in the country after the media said the service restricted access to government agencies.
This American company has become a global leader in video conferencing applications, and after the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, it has become ubiquitous as companies and schools use it online.
Russian media reported on Wednesday that out of concerns about the new US sanctions on Moscow, Zoom has banned its distributors from selling to government agencies and state-owned companies to the Russian government and some post-Soviet countries (known as the Commonwealth of Independent States).
“Zoom continues to be committed to serving customers in the Russian market and the Commonwealth of Independent States,” Zoom said in reply to an AFP inquiry.
“We are in the process of evolving our approach in the region, and in the meantime, new and existing customers in both the public and private sectors can seek to procure Zoom accounts directly through our website.”
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Wednesday downplayed any lack of access to Zoom, but added that Russia needs to “switch to alternatives”.
“Our operators of similar platforms will need to work hard to complete their services,” he told reporters.
“But they do exist and will be able to compensate for the absence of such a popular service as Zoom.”