Tech firm Sandvine cancels Belarus contract, citing ‘custom code’ that aided censorship

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Written by Sean Lyngaas Sep 16, 2020 | CYBERSCOOP

Sandvine, an internet routing and networking company, said Tuesday it would stop doing business with Belarus after realizing that government was using its products to suppress information during a bloody crackdown on protesters.
“Sadly, preliminary results of our investigation indicate that custom code was developed and inserted into Sandvine’s products to thwart the free flow of information during the Belarus election,” the company said in a statement, which was first reported by Bloomberg News. “This is a human rights violation and it has triggered the automatic termination of our end user license agreement.”
Belarus has been in a state of turmoil following an August election marred by allegations of fraud in which President Alexander Lukashenko, who has held power for a quarter-century, claimed victory. State security forces have arrested thousands of people and subjected hundreds to torture, according to Human Rights Watch.
Sandvine was founded in Canada and is backed by a San Francisco-based equity firm Francisco Partners. The firm, which says it sells data-collection and other telecom products in more than 100 countries, reportedly played a key part in Lukashenko’s attempt to stifle information. The government used equipment to block Belarusians’ access …

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