The Great Russian Firewall: Putin to unplug his country from the internet

The Great Russian Firewall: Putin to unplug his country from the internet

The Great Russian Firewall: Putin to unplug his country from the internet

Russian authorities and internet providers will conduct a test to make sure data passing between its citizens and organizations can stay inside the country rather than being routed internationally, ZDNet reports.

According to Kozlyuk, internet pre-filtering centres will also be introduced and the Russian Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media (also known as the Roskomnadzor ) will be able to regulate traffic routing.

The bill proposes that all internet traffic to users be routed through servers in Russian Federation - making VPNs (virtual private networks) ineffective.

There is no exact date for the test but it's expected to be carried out before April 1.

The plan is part of a draft law, called Digital Economy National Program, which was submitted to Russia's parliament a year ago, BBC News reports, citing Russian media.

Russia has tried, so far with extremely limited success, to block Telegram, a popular encrypted messaging service, but its use continues to be widespread, including among some senior Russian government officials who are reported to use VPNs to circumvent the ban.

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Those behind the legislation say the aim is to create "defence mechanisms to ensure the long-term stable function of internet networks in Russia" in the event the United States takes any action in cyberspace to threaten them.

It's not clear if this test will disrupt Internet connectivity inside Russian Federation or not but all Internet providers have agreed to participate.

North Atlantic Treaty Organisation nations recently said they planned to hit Russian Federation with a stronger response to its own cyber attacks.

But it also is meant to test if all Russian internet traffic can be gathered and routed through a few points controlled by government sources.

In 2017, Russian officials said they wanted to route 95 percent of all internet traffic locally by 2020, ZDNet added.

The concept appears similar to China's Great Firewall, which regulates internet operations in view of reinforcing national sovereignty.

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