Russian websites and services are blocked in Ukraine
On May 16, the Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko signed a decree to expand the sanctions against Russia. More than 500 organizations were blacklisted. Among them, there were such popular social networks in Ukraine as “Vk.com” and “Odoklassniki.ru”, email servers “yandex.ru” and “mail.ru” and others. The Ukrainian government explained that such measures were necessary to prevent the Russian propaganda and any cyber-attacks. Although, many experts said such restriction was not the best way to solve the problem.
First of all, this restriction affected simple Ukrainian people who got used to the social networks. “Vk.com” website was one of the most popular websites to communicate with friends, “Odoklassniki.ru”, “yandex.ru” and “mail.ru” are in the top ten. According to “mail.ru” statistics, about 25 million Ukrainian people used their service every month. This was almost half of the population. It caused a lot of inconvenience for people to communicate with each other, as their rights for the information search and dissemination were infringed.
The Ukrainian society is divided in two parts: some people support the restriction of Russian websites, considering them as a propaganda; others think that their rights are violated. There is no freedom of speech. Such changes will cause negative social and economic consequences.
In response to this, the social networks and email services sent the instructions to their users how to avoid the restriction. There are several options, e,g, to use a VPN (virtual private network) program, a proxy server to hide the IP address or to use a special browser. These options are a bit inconvenient, because they slow down the internet connection, though it helps people to access the prohibited websites and continue their correspondence by email.
There were rumours at first that people would be punished if they used the banned websites, though the Ukrainian State Security Service (SBU) officially declared that there would be no penalty for the users who did not obey the restriction.
If you have any problems contacting your friends in Ukraine at “yandex.ru” or “mail.ru” email addresses, please report to us and we will try to help you to establish the direct connection.