Moscow may start imposing hefty fines on tech giants, including Google and Facebook, over failing to comply with Russian legislation. The new fines will reportedly be equal to one percent of a firm’s annual revenue in the country.
Russian authorities are planning to amend the current legislation to implement the measure, according to unnamed sources and a copy of the document reportedly seen by Reuters.
Under the current regulations, Russian authorities may impose fines of just a few thousand dollars or block the online services that violate the rules. This option is sometimes fraught with technical difficulties. Under current legislation the maximum fine Google may face in Russia is 700,000 rubles ($10,595). If the proposal is pushed through, Russian telecoms watchdog will be able to impose fines of at least $7 million.
Facebook is reportedly negotiating the issue with Russian authorities, as the social networking giant hasn’t moved servers storing its Russian users’ data to Russia, as is required by the current legislation which obliges companies to keep data on Russian users in the country.