Putin backed law forcing tech companies to leave Russia

With Love from Putin’s Russia

After new reports come out last month that Apple may get potentially banned from Russia because of a new legislation, reports are coming in that major tech companies such as Google, Facebook and Twitter are making plans to leave Russia altogether in view of the new legislation which will kick in from 1st Jan, 2015. Microsoft started the trend  when the Redmond based company decided to move its Skype development team from Moscow to Prague and Adobe followed soon after, completely shutting down all operations in mainland Russia.

Putin’s Behest

If ITWire is be believed, Russia’s new law that is the cause behind all of these migrations, is being made at the personal request of Russian premier Vladimir Putin. These new rules which are explained in our previous post here, make it mandatory for companies gathering data on Russian users to store the data on servers within Russian territory so that it is accessible to Russian authorities with ease. This has caused Microsoft to move its Skype development team to Prague and Google to move its own R&D teams. Adobe on the other hand will be relying on cloud computing to carry on its Russian activities and therefore does not see the need to maintain any physical offices.  By the looks of things, the tech companies that do decide to remain in Russia following these regulations, are expected to face a torrid time ahead.

“The Internet began initially when the Internet first appeared as a special CIA project and is still being developed that way. The rest is what has made it to the market and has developed to huge proportions. Nevertheless it is initially a military program, a special program, and special services are still at the center of things,” Putin said in April at a local television. Putin sternly believes that foreign spying claims are threats to be worried about and hence is keen to enforce these rules. Putin accused companies such as Google and Microsoft of collecting user data and handing it to the CIA and even recommended Russians to avoid using their products because everything was monitored.

Counter View

It is being touted that these companies are withdrawing their presence for fear of exposure to Russian authorities. If data is stored on local servers, the Russian authorities will get access to it eventually – this is being touted as the reason for these companies to move their resources outside the country. But the question remains, each of these companies made a hue and cry about how their systems are completely secure against any government interference. Then why the retreat ? If these companies really are not hand in glove with the NSA, why are they trying to stay safe from Russian scrutiny ?

This only gives credit that the spy saga disclosed by Edward Snowden is far from dead. The Russian premier, though criticised might actually be the only head of government taking any concrete steps to protect its citizens.

Will Apple follow next…

5 COMMENTS

  1. This is so communist like post. Not only tech companies are running away from Russia, but also small companies, Putin is crazy dude and people loving what he does ? I think people will hang him soon and we will see same thing happening in Russia, what was 6-8 months ago in Ukraine. Hes loosing his chess match

    • as scenario played in ukraine half or so year ago and the director is CIA, same thing coming soon to russian blockbusters. the end of putin era in any case ..

  2. The Internet was not developed as a CIA project, or secret military network, it was only funded with an awarded contract, if one could in fact create a packet switching network. The Government has their own networking protocols for the good stuff that is independent of TCP/IP which is the Internet. The internet, in it’s current form, comes from primarily two places, which after it was created, was awarded with funding for the government..

    1:) ARPANET: Was the first ever recorded time when a packet was sent via a network. It was performed by professor Leonard Kleinrock. The packet was sent between two colleges, not the government. From there ARPANET was then used to create the first multinetwork connections.

    2:) After it was more widely adapted, ARPANET was funded by a couple of private foundations, to further expand it’s capabilities, which eventually led to the development of the TCP/IP protocol suite which is essentially everything that is the Internet.

    Now, considering the government does have control of all the major RNG manufacturers in the world, I will not argue against the idea that they essentially have full control of everything. For those whom are not aware, RNG’s are Random Number Generators. They are basically the only thing that will allow your machine to create say, a unique key for encryption, etc. If someone, say the government, *cough*, forces all manufacturers to produces RNG’s only using their number sequences, then this essentially means every private key in the world, is no longer private for the government. Making all security worldwide null and void for them. No matter what you have done or how it is encrypted, they have the key already because they know the numbers that the RNG’s are going to give your computer to use. So, I won’t argue against the idea the government controls the Internet, but, they did not create it. Now, there are secret government projects that lead to special networking and protocols, but these are generally kept for the government only as that is how it stays secure, if you do not know the protocol they are using to communicate, it is essentially impossible to hack or even connect to their network.

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