As you are most certainly aware, war has broken out in eastern Europe. Storj is a US company. We stand firmly with Ukraine, and also recognize that the Russian people are not responsible for the recent actions by their government. We have a blog post coming about our support for Ukraine shortly.
As a US company, we must comply with any sanctions the US government imposes. The current sanctions do not require us to stop payment to Russian storage nodes. We will do our best to support storage node operators wherever they are while still complying with the laws that apply to us.
Currently, the only related sanctions we must comply with, in addition to sanctions in place prior to 2022, are for nodes operated in Luhanska Oblast, Donetska Oblast, and the Crimean peninsula, including Sebastopol. Nodes operated in these regions are currently under sanctions. This means that payment for these nodes will not go out. The situation is active and constantly changing, and if new sanctions are posted, we will comply with them.
Most recently, there has been some concern that Russia will decide to cut itself off from the global internet. This is not the first time Russia has considered this. Storj has been contemplating this possible outcome for some time, but believes the likelihood of this event has increased due to recent events.
Storj expects to occasionally have advanced notice of risks impacting storage nodes’ internet connectivity. While we make every effort to be prepared in advance for a situation such as this happening without warning, an unexpected event of this magnitude could have a major impact in repair load after the fact, even if no data is lost (we do not expect lost data even if this were to happen unexpectedly). It would be better to spread this load out in advance. In the case of a hurricane, for instance, we may temporarily halt new uploads to a suspected affected region, and increase repair rates around that region during that time.
The Russian internet connectivity concern is no different. Storj believes there is potential for risk, and as a result, has temporarily halted new uploads to storage nodes in Russia and once more increased repair thresholds.
If you’ve been seeing recent code changes: we made these changes by excluding certain regions during uploads and during our health evaluation phase, but have so far not chosen to actually instruct the repair workers to treat pieces in excluded regions as failed.
We are hoping for peace and are eager to look back on this step as overly cautious. Please stay tuned for an update about what we’re doing to support Ukraine, and as always we are eager for feedback on what more we can do to facilitate peace and stability during this time.