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Russia cracks down on public WiFi usage

WilliamGeorge (816305) writes | about 3 months ago

0

WilliamGeorge (816305) writes "Russia is further constraining access to the internet and freedom of speech, with new laws regarding public use of WiFi. Nikolai Nikiforov, the Russian Communications Minister, tweeted that "Identification of users (via bank cards, cell phone numbers, etc.) with access to public Wifi is a worldwide practice." This comes on top of their actions recently to block websites of political opponents to Russian president Vladimir Putin, require registration of prominent bloggers, and more.

The law was put into effect with little notice and without the input of Russian internet providers. Sergei Plugotarenko, head of the Russian Electronic Communications Association, said "It was unexpected, signed in such a short time and without consulting us." He added, "We will hope that this restrictive tendency stops at some point because soon won't there be anything left to ban."

In addition to the ID requirement to use WiFi, the new law also requires companies to declare who is using their web networks and calls for Russian websites to store their data on servers located in Russia starting in 2016."

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