Yandex taxi service banned in Latvia

The Road Transport Administration has taken a decision to annul the registration of the website and mobile application service provider “Yandex Taxi B.V.” and to block the operation of the mobile app “Yandex Go” as it was found to exchange data with servers located in Russia, the Administration said on March 21.

As of Wednesday, March 23, carriers will no longer be allowed to use the “Yandex Go” mobile app, and this service provider will no longer be able to operate in the territory of Latvia. Drivers and carriers who will continue to use Yandex Go may be penalized for using an unregistered website.

The Road Transport Administration found that Yandex Go was exchanging data with servers in Russia, thus it was concluded that data on the services and payments carried out in the territory of Latvia are possibly processed and stored on servers located in Russia.

“The transfer of data to countries which are not members of the European Union or a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation or NATO is a major violation which threatens national security and creates access to data of Latvian and foreign citizens using the website or mobile application services. The registration of the website and mobile application service provider Yandex Taxi B.V. is voided. At the moment, the Administration is preparing a request for blocking, which will be sent to all electronic communications operators,” said Kristiāns Godiņš, Chairman of the Road Transport Administration.

This is the second time that the Road Transport Administration has decided to block the operation of the mobile application “Yandex Go” on the territory of Latvia. In March 2020, the mobile app “Yandex.Taxi” and the taxi.yandex.lv website were blocked because the service provider had not registered with the Road Transport Administration but continued to provide commercial transport.

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