Russian authorities have reportedly asked Apple and Google to remove the LinkedIn app from their respective online stores. The move comes as a Russian court recently banned the Microsoft-owned professional network service in the country for non-compliance of its personal data laws.
LinkedIn was officially blocked in Russian back in November for violating the country’s laws on data protection policy, where websites operating in the country are required to store user data on the country’s servers. The New York Times now reports that Apple has confirmed it was asked to remove the LinkedIn app from its App Store in Russia around a month back. However, Google denied to make any official comment on the matter, but did confirm it is operating within Russian laws.
A LinkedIn spokesperson said in statement to NYT that they are ‘disappointed’ with Russia’s decision to ban its services in the country.
LinkedIn has nearly a million users in Russia, and the news is undeniably a major blow for Microsoft – who recently acquired the professional social network in a deal worth $26.2 billion. Russia has already banned access to LinkedIn’s website after the professioanl social networking service did not transfer user data to servers in Russia, and getting its app removed from the App store and Google Play would further add to Microsoft’s woes.
To recall, the LinkedIn-Microsoft deal finally came to a closure in December last year. The deal is perhaps one of the biggest acquisitions in tech history. With the LinkedIn acquisition, the Redmond giant plans to become one of the top providers of cloud- based services. Besides, Microsoft is also working to integrate its suite of cloud-based services with LinkedIn which include Office 365, Microsoft Dynamics, along with customer relationship management (CRM). Moreover, the Redmond giant plans to work on Artificial Intelligence, cloud-based devices, along with machine learning to get the best out the professional networking service.