Kazakhstan freezes US$39 million joint cybersecurity project with Russia

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Kazakhstan has terminated cooperation within the joint project of Transtelecom JSC and the Russian company “Safe Information Zone” (“Bizon”) worth about 2.4 billion rubles (equivalent to US$39 million).


Kommersant reported yesterday , that the contract was signed in 2019 for a period of six years in order to create a cloud solution in Kazakhstan that provides automation of protection against cyber threats.


Bizon, a partner of Sberbank, previously part of its structures, was reportedly established in 2016. The company was engaged in protecting the infrastructure of the parent organization.


Transtelecom JSC was established in 1998 and is one of the largest telecom operators in Kazakhstan.


Bizon and Sberbank refused to comment on the information about the freezing of the project, and Kazakh Transtelecom did not respond to journalists’ requests either, according to Kommersant.


According to the head of the analytical center Zecurion Vladimir Ulyanov, the shutdown of the project could be related to the decision of the Kazakh side to independently develop cybersecurity. He also believes that the Kazakhstan market is saturated with Western vendors.


Stopping cooperation, in his opinion, will not have a negative impact on the reputation of Bizon. In general, Russian solutions in the field of cybersecurity have the potential for export, but not so much to the CIS, but to the countries of the Middle East, Africa and Latin America, the expert believes.


In turn, PIR Center consultant Oleg Shakirov recalled that Kazakhstan began curtailing cooperation with Sberbank and its structures after Russia launched the so-called “special military operation” in Ukraine. He noted that back in April, the country abandoned the partnership with the bank in the field of digitalization of the public sector, which was concluded at the WEF-2021 with the participation of the presidents of the two countries.


Source: Asia-Plus