There has recently been a lot of news coverage regarding tech companies in the US and globally and their partnerships with Facebook. We wanted to explain the nature of our former partnership with Facebook to help our users better understand the dynamics and to ensure our users that we are deeply committed to protecting their privacy.
In January 2014, Yandex announced that it entered into an agreement with Facebook to enrich our search results by indexing public data from Facebook pages and public Facebook posts for users in Russia, Turkey, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, and other CIS countries. Similar to other leading search engines, the agreement with Facebook helped improve our search results and also provided Facebook with more traffic. Our agreement was limited to the countries stated above in which we operate our search engine, and was limited to content posted by users under “Public” privacy settings. No user data from other countries was shared between Facebook and Yandex. Yandex and other search engines stopped receiving data from Facebook in 2015 after Facebook disabled the relevant API enabling the data feed. Yandex complied with all terms of the agreement for receiving data, and we were unaware of any continued or additional access being shared with Yandex through that API. In providing our services, a significant part of our commitment to users everywhere is protecting their privacy and security.
Yandex is an international company and is listed on the Nasdaq Global Select Market. As it pertains to information requests, in each country in which we operate, Yandex complies with strict internal procedures and all applicable legal requirements when dealing with requests by local authorities, which provide that any requests may be considered only upon a proper court decision or under other grounds provided for by laws of the respective jurisdiction. Yandex does not voluntarily share any information with the authorities and has a history of successfully challenging unfounded requests for user data in courts.