July 19, State Duma deputies in two readings adopted amendments to the law " On the information … ", – they write" Vedomosti ". It's about the amendments that regulate the work of instant messengers and anonymizers in Russia. The original version of the amendments was developed in 2015 with the participation of the Media and Communication Union. This option over time has changed, for example, removed items that regulate the operation of online theaters. The final version of the amendments establishes the requirement for messengers, violation of these requirements threatens the appropriate services with a fine and blocking.
One of the requirements is the identification of users by phone number. A number of programs already use this method of registration and confirmation of identity. But in most messengers the indication of the phone number is not necessarily mandatory. Deputies who drafted the amendments explained the introduction of such requirements by the need to combat the spread of drugs, extremist content and information that threatens the lives of children.
The main bill proposed "to identify users using a subscriber number on the basis of an identification agreement concluded by the organizer of instant messaging with the telecommunications operator." Accordingly, the messengers received "obligations to ensure the technical ability of users to refuse to receive electronic messages from other users, to ensure the possibility of sending electronic messages on the initiative of public authorities, as well as limiting the distribution and transmission of messages containing information distributed in violation of Russian law."
This concerns the first part of the amendments. The second one regulates the work of anonymizers and VPN in Russia. As you know, with the help of these servers users bypass the blocking of sites, access to which is closed within the RF. Until recently, the head of Roskomnadzor claimed that the use of such services is a voluntary matter for every user, there are no penalties for working with anonymizers or VPNs. But a little later the agency was still concerned about the issue of more reliable blocking of access to sites that were on the blacklist.
As a result, it was decided to regulate the work of anonymizers in such a way that they would add to their own black lists sites with banned information. In the event that such services do not do this, they, in turn, will be blocked.
Except already mentioned moments, the deputies were to consider also the third block of amendments to the law "On Information …", which regulates the work of social networks in Russia. This document provided for the obligation to oblige social network owners to delete information that "is clearly aimed at propagating war, incitement to national, racial or religious hatred and enmity", plus "inaccurate and (or) discrediting the honor and dignity of another person or his reputation information" and " Information for the dissemination of which criminal or administrative liability is provided "within 24 hours. If the resource refused to delete such data, it would have to pay a fine in the amount of 3 million to 50 million rubles.
The government after reviewing the amendments criticized the document, so the deputies had to withdraw the bill for revision. In fact, now the legislators will not be able to amend the State Duma until the autumn of this year. "The authors have repeatedly stated that their initiative is largely a tracing-paper from German law. Copying the provisions of foreign legislation can hardly be effective within the Russian legal system, "said Leonid Levin, chairman of the State Duma committee on information policy, information technology and communications.
According to the plan, the new rules will come into force as early as January 1, 2018. Up to this point, only a few months have left, which officials are proposing to the owners of instant messengers to devote their services to the new working conditions.
However, despite the fact that the amendments are in fact accepted, not all representatives of the IT sphere agree with them. For example, Irina Levova, director of strategic projects at the Institute for Internet Research, argues that, from a technical point of view, bills passed by the State Duma are not feasible. Other experts agree with this opinion.
P.S. When commenting on this material, please follow the rules of SurprizingFacts.