A Russian court fined Twitter and Facebook 4 million rubles each for refusing to store the personal data of Russian citizens on local servers.
At the end of January, Russia’s telecommunications watchdog Roskomnadzor instituted administrative proceedings against Facebook and Twitter after they refused to store data of Russian users on servers located in the country.
On Thursday, a court in Moscow fined Twitter and Facebook 4 million rubles (roughly $63,000) each for refusing to store the personal data of Russian citizens on servers that are located in Russia. According to the media, these are the largest penalties imposed by the Kremlin on Western IT firms under internet use laws since 2012.
“The fines of nearly $63,000 are the first five-figure fines levied on tech companies since Russia adopted a flurry of legislation starting in 2012 designed to tighten the government’s grip on online activity.” reported the Associated Press.
Roskomnadzor is attempting to oblige the IT giants, including Facebook, Twitter, and Google to move data related to Russian citizens to servers in Russia allowing the Government to monitor them.,
Roskomnadzor pointed out that the fines are the only anticipation of further penalties for both companies that would be fined 18 million rubles ($283,000) each if they don’t comply this year.
This isn’t the first time that Twitter and Facebook were fined by the Kremlin, in 2019 the Russian watchdog punished both with a $47-fine for violating the same personal data regulation.
The Russian government could also ban IT companies that will not comply with the same law.
The Russian government has already blocked the professional social network LinkedIn in 2016 under the data-localization legislation.
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