Russia fines Google for 'illegal content'

Google fined for not restricting prohibited content on its site related to the war in Ukraine

Tech Desk July 19, 2022
A sign is pictured outside a Google office near the company's headquarters in Mountain View, California, U.S., May 8, 2019. PHOTO: REUTERS

Russia has fined Google $373 million (2.1 billion rubles) for not restricting access to prohibited content regarding the war in Ukraine.

The communications regulator in Russia, Roskomnadzor, believed the information contained ‘fake’ reports on Russia’s military, urging Russians to protest.

Google has been called a “systematic” violator of Russian laws, while the US tech giant hasn't responded for comment. The company’s local subsidiary last month declared bankruptcy after its local bank account was seized by Russian authorities for similar reasons.

Russia has been striving to control social media and news sites of content relating to the war in Ukraine. A law passed condemned people to 15 years in prison for spreading fake information about the war.

In March of this year, Google stopped its commercial services in the country, and restricted news accounts backed by Russia. However, it did not completely back out of the country, due to the heavy reliance on its services by local people.

According to BBC, the fine is the biggest imposed on a tech company by Russia.


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