FSB admitted that “smart glasses” from Facebook and Ray-Ban can be attributed to “spy technology”

The Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses, recently released by Facebook and glasses maker Ray-Ban, may be classified as secret information devices. This is stated in the response of the FSB to a request from TJournal about the legality of using Ray-Ban Stories in Russia.

These glasses may have design features that allow them to be classified as special technical means intended for secretly obtaining information.

The FSB referred to the first note to Article 138.1 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. It says that the means of secretly obtaining information can be attributed to devices in which the functions of secretly obtaining information or accessing it without the knowledge of its owner are deliberately built.

However, the second note to this article contains a number of exceptions, in which the device is not classified as “spyware”. TJournal has previously concluded that Ray-Ban Stories fit all of the exceptions.

At the time of this writing, Ray-Ban Stories cannot be officially purchased in Russia. At the same time, they can be ordered from abroad through third-party services and received as a regular postal parcel.TJOURNAL

The presentation of Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses took place in early September. The device is equipped with two front cameras that allow you to take photos and videos. Speakers and microphones are built into the temples for listening to music and receiving calls. Glasses start at $ 299.

In Russia, cases of illegal trafficking in “spy equipment” have been initiated more than once. The most famous of these is the case against a Kurgan farmer who bought a GPS tracker to track a cow. When Russian President Vladimir Putin found out about this case, the case against the farmer was  closed .

In 2018, the Russian FSB gave a definition of “spy equipment”, but experts  criticized the  proposed wording because of the broad interpretation of the term. In 2019, the State Duma passed laws detailing which devices are not classified as “spyware”.

(c)MEDUZA 2021

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