Microsoft president Brad Smith announced that the company will “suspend all new sales” in Russia in a blog post published on March 4th.
The company behind Windows and Xbox is just the latest to announce a stop to some services in Russia amid the ongoing illegal invasion of Ukraine.
The announcement specifically addresses new sales and doesn’t mention existing service contracts, nor did it address why. The Verge points out that Microsoft has recently focused on cloud and support services — cutting off existing contracts would be “devastating” for both organizations and individuals using Windows, Office, Microsoft 365, Azure, and Xbox products in Russia.
“We are coordinating closely and working in lockstep with the governments of the United States, the European Union and the United Kingdom, and we are stopping many aspects of our business in Russia in compliance with governmental sanctions decisions,” Smith wrote.
Moreover, Smith wrote that Microsoft would “continue to work proactively to help cybersecurity officials in Ukraine defend against Russian attacks, including most recently a cyberattack against a major Ukrainian broadcaster.”
The move comes after Ukraine asked Sony and Microsoft to pause operations in Russia and Belarus. Microsoft’s ban on new sales in Russia also comes amid restrictions from several tech giants, including Apple and Netflix.