Russian parliament waves through powers for internet iron curtain | 4/12/2019 | Staff
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The Russian State Duma, the lower house of parliament, has voted to approve the controversial bill that would give politicians powers to isolate the country from the internet.

The so-called "sovereign internet" bill is on track to become law by 1 November, and according to local newswire TASS, the implementation is expected to cost ₽30bn ($470m, £356m).

Law - Internet - Infrastructure - Resources - Runet

Technically, the law doesn't aim to separate Russian internet infrastructure and resources – popularly known as runet – but to ensure their continued operation in the event global networks are inaccessible, or if a hostile power attempts to shut down connectivity to and from Russia.

The effort has been criticised in Russia and abroad as it would likely reduce network performance and introduce much greater potential for state censorship – already a massive problem in Russia, thanks to its vague anti-terrorism laws and restrictions on the use of VPNs.

US - Nonprofit - Freedom - House - Rates

The US government-funded nonprofit Freedom House currently rates Russia as "not free" in its internet freedom report, with the country's score declining six years in a row.

There are also considerable practical challenges in implementing the sovereign internet – among them the need to create a national Domain Name System (DNS).

Order - Promises - Law - ISPs - Internet

In order to deliver on its promises, the law would essentially force ISPs to funnel all internet traffic in and out of the country through monitored internet exchanges located in Russia.

"This would make it easier for the authorities to expand internet censorship and isolate the nation from the global Internet in times of conflict," said Ameet Naik, technical marketing manager at network monitoring...
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