Russian government websites inaccessible after Kremlin attempts to slow down traffic to Twitter

From March 10, the speed of the internet traffic to Twitter will be slowed down for Russian users, announced the Russian media watchdog, Roskomnadzor. According to Roskomnadzor the “slowdown in the speed of service” was a measure intended to force Twitter to comply with Russian law and protect Russians from “influence of illegal content.”

In the first stage, access to Twitter will be slowed down from half of computers in Russia and from all mobile devices. Roskomnadzor threatened that if Twitter continues to ignore the “requirements to remove illegal content”, the measures can be tightened “up to blocking” access to the service.

After Roskomnadzor announced that it was introducing measures against Twitter, its own website stopped opening, reported the news agency RBC. Similar Problems began with the websites of other government agencies.

Depending on the users’ internets providers, various government websites cannot be accessed. Some users report problems with the website of the Russian parliament, the Kremlin and the government. Some users also report issue with accessing sites of the Investigative Committee, the Ministry of Digital Development, the Ministry of Finance an others.

The press service of the Russian Federation Council confirmed that the website of the upper house of parliament was also working intermittently. “The causes of the failure are being investigated, the problem will be fixed in the near future,” reads the statement of the Russian Federation Council.

Downdetector, which monitors internet failures, reports failures at one of Russia’s largest Internet providers, Rostelecom. As of 12:30pm Moscow time, 92% of users complain about their Internet connection.

Rostelecom’s representative, commenting on problems with Internet access, said that there was an equipment failure. “The problem is localized. The network will be restored soon,” the operator’s press service said. The representative could not say whether the glitch was due to what Roskomnadzor’s attempt to slow down the traffic to Twitter. Later, the company’s president Mikhail Oseevski said that the failures had nothing to do with Roskomnadzor’s actions. “It’s a technical problem, we’re resetting the software now. This happens with software,” he said, adding that the problem was related to the routers. The Russian Ministry of Social Security, as RIA Novosti reports, also said that the internet failures were related to the routers in the Rostelecom network.

(C)UAWIRE 2021

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