Russia Clampdown Stokes Fears of Balkanization of the Web

Governments and tech companies continue to tussle over control of the internet. Russia’s parliament approved “a bill requiring all technology companies to store the personal data of their Russian users in the country,” reports Kathrin Hille for the Financial Times. “The Russian clampdown is the first serious move to assert national control over segments of the web in the wake of the revelation of mass electronic surveillance by the US National Security Agency.” The companies contend such local storage units would be costly and contribute to fragmentation of the internet. Companies point to such demands as steps toward censorship as some European analysts ask if the companies manipulated search results to poke fun at a European Parliament rule allowing individuals to request removal of embarrassing links. The deadline for compliance on the Russian rule is September 2016. “Putin, a former KGB officer, has described the internet as a conspiracy invented by the CIA,” Hille notes. As governments impose new demands, progressive tech firms may set limits and refuse to do business in some locales. – YaleGlobal

Russia Clampdown Stokes Fears of Balkanization of the Web

Governments try to control of the internet: Russia’s parliament approves a bill requiring technology firms to store personal data on Russian users in Russia
Kathrin Hille
Friday, July 11, 2014

Additional reporting was provided by Robert Cookson in London.

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2014.

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