Russia seems to be cutting itself off from the world wide web

Among other things, owners of telecommunications services are obliged to switch to DNS servers located on the territory of the Russian Federation by March 11. It should also remove any javascript code downloaded from overseas, such as banners or counters.

Russia has blocked foreign sources of information in recent days. Facebook and Twitter don’t work in this country, as do Russian versions of foreign news servers. The social network TikTok was even suspended in Russia on Sunday, the Unian agency reported.

At the same time, after the military invasion of neighboring Ukraine, Russia is facing an increasing number of hacker attacks from around the world.

“TikTok is a platform for creativity and entertainment that can bring relief and human contact in times of war, when people face great tragedy and isolation. However, the safety of our employees and users remains our top priority. In light of Russia’s new ‘fake news’ law , we have no choice but to suspend live streaming and new content on our video service while assessing the security implications of the law,” the app said on its Twitter account.

Up to 15 years in prison

Russia’s parliament on Friday approved the introduction of criminal liability and imprisonment of up to 15 years for “misinformation and false news about the Russian military, to discredit the armed forces and call for sanctions.”

The amendments incorporate into the Criminal Code a new provision on the intentional dissemination of false information about the use of armed forces to defend the interests of Russia and its citizens.

In fact, this means that the media can only publish official information from the authorities. Given the current invasion of Ukraine, they can only report on how Moscow presented the conflict – a “special military operation” to liberate Ukraine.

On Saturday, German stations ARD and ZDF decided to stop broadcasting from Russia due to the new law. Spanish news agency EFE will also suspend its activities in Russia, and French radio company Radio France is considering it.

The withdrawal of their journalists from Russia has previously been announced by, for example, CNN, BBC, CBC or Bloomberg.

Lance Heptinstall

"Hardcore zombie fan. Incurable internet advocate. Subtly charming problem solver. Freelance twitter ninja."

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