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Ban on foreign apps dictated by requirements for data security, arms exporter Rostec says

Russia’s arms exporter Rostec confirmed that its employees are prohibited from installing foreign apps, such as Zoom, Skype and WhatsApp on corporate computers and laptops.

Earlier, RBC reported that Russian defense companies now seek to thwart business communications via WhatsApp, Skype and Zoom. Such communication will be moved to domestically-developed messaging apps. The report cited changes in WhatsApp’s confidentiality policy as the reason for such a move.

“Rostec is an industrial behemoth, which operates in the defense sphere and develops high-tech civilian fields in aviation, engine-building, electronics, medicine, pharma and other spheres. This imposes very serious demands on informational security. Foreign-made apps […] are prohibited for installation on corporate equipment. Instead, we offer a list of recommended products that guarantee the required level of informational security,” the state corporation said, adding that the employees’ personal devices are not covered by these restrictions.

The company pointed out that modern Russian IT industry offers a wide array of messaging apps for corporate customers, which make it possible to do without foreign analogues without detriment to business processes.

The company also noted that corporate restrictions were introduced much earlier than WhatsApp amended its confidentiality policy.

“These risks did not appear yesterday, they have always been present, and we were obliged to mitigate them,” Rostec said.

The IVA AVES S system

Earlier, media reported that Rostec, in cooperation with the R&D center Hi-Tech, developed the IVA AVES S system, which makes it possible to hold video conferences with participation of up to 250 people without delay. It also has chat, event scheduling, poll, conference recording and file exchange features. The company held conferences on this platform throughout the pandemic period.

The IVA AVES S is a completely domestic product, adapted to special security requirements of various agencies.

Source: TASS