A Russian court on Tuesday (September 14th) slammed huge fines on American social media giants, Facebook and Twitter. The fine is coming because both platforms did not delete contents that the Russian government considers to be illegal. This move is part of a wider crackdown on the social media space in Russia. The largest and most populous European nation wants big technology companies to open full-fledged offices in Russia. The government also wants these firms to store Russian personal data within its territory.
According to the Russian court, Facebook has to pay five fines which total 21 million roubles (about $288,000). In addition, Twitter will have to pay two fines while Telegram also got a fine. Facebook, Twitter, and Telegram did not immediately respond for comments. Twitter has been the subject of a punitive slowdown since March this year. According to the Russian government, Twitter and other social media firms did not quickly delete materials that it considers to be illegal.
Whether or not Google, Facebook, and other internet giants will meet the Russian needs remain to be seen. However, their operations will face a huge setback if they do not meet the needs of the Russian government.
Russia to increase fines on big non-Russian tech companies from 5% to 20%
Large technology and internet companies have been a huge topic of discussion for a long time. These companies are usually hit with huge fines for issues ranging from privacy to monopoly to illegal content. A new report shows that the Russian government is seeking to impose stronger fines on internet giants. The report claims that the Russian Internet regulators are preparing to substantially increase the amount (fines) on Google’s parent company, Alphabet, Facebook, as well as US technology companies. The Russian government is doing this as part of a push to support its own tech companies.
The Russian Federal Communications, Information Technology, and Mass Media Supervision Agency (Roskomnadzor) said that companies that refuse to delete content deemed illegal content will face huge fines. The fine will be 20% of the companies annual revenue. This is a massive 15% increase from the usual 5%.
“Many companies systematically refuse to comply with Roskomnadzor’s legal requirements, and the issue of fines based on revenue ratio will soon be considered.” Roskomnadzor said the bureau is also considering other enforcement methods.
This month, South Korea imposed a fine of 207.4 billion won ($175 million) on Google for abusing Android’s dominance. Also, Facebook was fined $216.7 million for violating EU user data sharing regulations.