Russia Threatens Facebook, Twitter With $100K Fines

Russia’s communications watchdog said Friday it has launched fresh proceedings against Facebook and Twitter over their failure to comply with local data laws.

The social media giants “have not provided information on the localization of Russian users’ database inside Russian servers on time,” the watchdog, Roskomnadzor, said. Roskomnadzor had issued a Jan. 31 deadline for Facebook and Twitter to report their compliance with a law that requires all servers that store Russians’ data to be relocated into Russia. 

The social media giants could be forced to pay a fine ranging from 1 million rubles (approximately $16,000) and 6 million rubles ($94,000), it said.

Roskomnadzor said Friday it will file its complaint in Russian court in three days.

Under a new law imposing stiffer fines that President Vladimir Putin signed last month, fines for repeat offenses go up to 18 million rubles (almost $290,000).

Russia’s Communications Ministry has backed fines as more effective measures for enforcement than bans.

“You can bypass bans, but if the company works [in Russia], it’ll have to pay,” Deputy Communications Minister Alexei Volin told the state-run TASS news agency Thursday.

Russia blocked the professional networking website LinkedIn in 2016 under the data-localization legislation.

(c) The Moscow Times


  1. Facebook and Twitter should do the honourable thing and pull out of Russia, but when has honour ever come before money?

      • Facebook is not well supported in Muscovy anyway, VK is the popular choice there, and that is run by the FSB, that’s why they are whining.

  2. In the (very) early putler days, I traveled several times to Moscow and St Pete on business and (thankfully) experienced no problems. Although I was questioned by militzia on one occasion at Sheremetyevo because (ironically in light of what happened later) I was wearing a heavy green jacket that was ex-Swedish military (it’s a long story). I had taken it on the plane on being informed that it was -25c in Moscow at that time and the jacket was wonderfully warm. The ‘interrogation’ was borderline farcical: after checking my business visa and credentials, they wanted to know if I was a hunter? ‘No’. So why was I wearing that? ‘Because it is very cold’. It was a slightly uncomfortable experience and I think was my final visit.
    Now of course it must be quite different, since the Fezbe probably check your social media as a good way to catch and persecute anyone who is even remotely critical of the tiny poisoner.
    I agree with F1: FB should not be in Russia. But then no reputable companies should be. Except of course kraut collaborator companies.

  3. First, mafia land can’t deal with any truths or that its people have ways to find such truths. Second, both parties can easily handle such fines.

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