Legal FAQ

SoftLayer Network-wide IP Blocking

SoftLayer implements network-wide blocking of communications to IP addresses which originate from countries that are subject to U.S. trade and economic sanctions.   Currently, these countries are Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria.  (The U.S. trade and economic sanctions for Sudan are limited to the Republic of Sudan.  The Republic of South Sudan is not subject to these sanctions.)

Q1: What are U.S. trade and economic sanctions?

A1: The United States prohibits most commercial transactions and other dealings with a handful of countries for foreign policy and national security reasons.  These prohibitions – formally known as trade and economic sanctions or comprehensive embargoes – currently target Iran, Cuba, North Korea, Sudan, and Syria. 

Q2: What data and what locations are affected by this policy?

A2: This policy affects all SoftLayer datacenter locations and environments, and blocks access by IP addresses registered to countries subject to U.S. trade and economic sanctions, including Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria. 

Q3:  How does SoftLayer come up with the list of IP addresses to be blocked?

A3:  To identify IP addresses associated with U.S. embargoed countries, SoftLayer references the Geo IP2 Database maintained by MaxMind (  SoftLayer updates its IP address country mapping on a quarterly basis.

Q4: Why does SoftLayer impose these U.S.-based export restrictions on non-U.S. customers?

A4: As a U.S. Company, SoftLayer complies with all United States export regulations across the full scope of its worldwide operations. The company has adopted this best practice as part of its export compliance processes.

Q5: Does this restriction apply to content that is not prohibited under U.S. sanctions and embargoes?

A5:  No.  Please contact SoftLayer at if you believe your content is not prohibited under U.S. trade and economic sanctions.