US Tech Companies Poised for Bigger Fines over Russian Content
On Monday, the federal communications watchdog - Roskomnadzor said that firms that decline to take down contents are considered illicit in Russia. Soon, those firms will face an alteration of 5% to 20% of their annual local revenue. In addition, Russia's internet regulators significantly raise the fines on tech giants like Alphabet and Facebook, as the Kremlin rockets its push to restrict online data access.
Media Outlets Forced to Shutdown
This year the country has maximized the pressure on foreign tech firms during a broader elimination of anti-Kremlin opposition. Alphabet's Google Inc. and US multinational tech company, Apple, were under pressure to take down an app known as Smart Voting last week. The app was developed to aid protesters to vote out the ruling party politicians after jurisdiction accused the firms of meddling in the parliament elections.
Several social media firms have been labeled foreign agents and were forced to shut down or conform to burdensome reporting needs. Roskomnadzor said, "For a number of companies that have systematically refused to comply with the agency's legal demands, the issue of fines on revenue is being considered in the near future."
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Fines on Apple and Google
In March, Russian President - Vladimir Putin stated the society will cave in from the inside unless the internet follows the moral regulations of the community. The courts continuously issued fines to tech giants for not taking down the contents. According to Roskomnadzor, Twitter has been fined 38.4Mn rubles, Google 26Mn rubles, and Facebook 66Mn rubles. Google's transparency statements pinpoint, in 2015, the firm received a notice to delete less than 5K contents, and last year the number raised to 340K.
Russian authorities in April ordered Apple to pay the US $12Mn for breaking monopoly laws and Google to pay 3Mn rubles for declining to store the country's personal information on servers in July. Since 2016, Microsoft Corp., owned by LinkedIn, has been banned for denying to store user information locally.
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