Victor Zhora, the deputy chief of Ukraine’s State Service of Special Communications and Information Protection, emphasized his department was planning for a contingency, but that it is being considered at all suggests Ukrainians want to be ready for any Russian threat to seize sensitive government documents.
“We are preparing the ground,” Zhora said. Plan A was to protect IT infrastructure within Ukraine. Removing it to a another country would only be a “Plan B or C”.
The move could only happen after regulatory changes approved by Ukrainian lawmakers, Zhora said.
Government officials have already been shipping equipment and backups to more secure areas of Ukraine beyond the reach of Russian forces, who invaded on Feb. 24 and are laying siege to several cities.
Last month Zhora told Politico there were plans to move critical data out of the capital Kyiv should it be threatened, but preparations for potentially moving data abroad go a step further.
Ukraine has received offers to host data from a variety of countries, Zhora said, declining to identify them. For reasons of proximity “a European location will be preferred,” he said.
“There are a lot options,” he said. “All the proposals are highly welcome and worth considering.”
Zhora gave few details of how such a move might be executed, but he said past efforts to keep government data out of Russia’s grasp involved either the physical transport of servers and removable storage devices or the digital migration of data from one service or server to another.