VPN Pulls Out Of Russia Due To New Data Retention Laws

Lines of digital data code with a shield symbol

The Russian Government has passed a new law that mandates that every provider must log all Russian internet traffic for up to a year, and as a result VPN provider Private Internet Access (PIA) has immediately discontinued its Russian gateways and will no longer be doing business in the region.

Image: iStock

PIA believes that it was due to the enforcement regime surrounding this new law that some of its Russian servers were recently seized by Russian Authorities, without notice or any type of due process. "We think it's because we are the most outspoken and only verified no-log VPN provider," PIA said in a statement.

Since PIA doesn't log any traffic or session data no data has been compromised and users remain private and secure.

For preventative reasons, PIA is rotating all of its certificates and updating client applications with improved security measures. Manual configurations will also now support the strongest new encryption algorithms including AES-256, SHA-256, and RSA-4096, PIA says.

If you are using the service, you will need to update your desktop client at and the Android App at Google Play. Manual openvpn configurations users will also need to download the new config files from the client download page.



    I note other VPN providers have been surprisingly quiet about the new laws and seizing of servers. What about those that keep 7 day logs?

    In an so-called oppressive country, companies pull out when they are required to store user's metadata but here in dear old Australia they said "jump" and we replied "how high?"

      Russia is requiring more than the storage of meta data.

      i thought the exact same thing when I first heard the news BUT this is different to Australia's metadata retention laws (which still require a warrant) and that I THINK is the key difference. PIA's servers were seized without on judicial proceedings. ie there was no warrant, no request to a judge or by a law enforcement agency they merely decided OK lets take these servers. I could be wrong but that appears to be what has happened. It's a sad day for mother Russia. BUT I dunno about you guys but I was never inclined to route my traffic through there anyways.

        Sad day for russia? Its more like business as usual. Based on their history, This is quite tame to what they can do.

      Meta Data is at an ISP Level. And The major VPN companies, If they were based in Australia (They arent btw) would have moved operation to another country, Which many of them have done before.

    I'd hold off installing the updated certificate in "roll-your-own" configs - there seems to be a problem with it on some openVPN implementations. The old cert. still works, and the problems are not present in the PIA-supplied clients.

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