Norwegian and Finnish regulators have imposed a ban on Yandex and its partner Ridetech International, prohibiting the transfer of personal data of customers of Yandex’s Yango ride-hailing app to Russia. This ban is in response to a new legislative reform from the Russian Federal Security Service, which grants it increased access to data processed in taxi operations.
The Norwegian Data Protection Authority has expressed its concern over this reform, as it means that Russian authorities could potentially monitor the movements of Norwegian citizens via Yango. In a statement, the Authority said, “There is an acute risk to privacy as Russian authorities could potentially monitor the movements of Norwegian citizens via Yango.
“In response, Yango has stressed its intention to comply with new requirements and its commitment to processing data in accordance with GDPR and EU regulations. A representative from the company said, “The legal regulations of the Russian Federation have no jurisdiction over the international ride-hailing business of Yango and do not apply to Yango users as they make trips and use the app outside of Russia. This will not change after the 1st of September.”
The ban on the transfer of data to Russia serves as an example of the effects of increasing government control on the transportation sector in Russia. It remains to be seen if other ride-hailing companies follow suit in order to protect the security of their customers and safeguard their privacy.