New legislation has been enacted by the Russian government that will drastically alter the technology market when its implemented in July 2020. Technology products using international software will be banned going forward after the upcoming summer unless they follow new guidelines created by Russian Authorities. This will apply to computers, smartphones, and smart televisions. Vladimir Putin’s government has claimed this is for the benefit of Russian Citizens, with the promotion of new advancements in their technology sector. However, these people have significant concerns that their government has implemented this law for surveillance purposes.
Corporations like Microsoft, Apple, and Samsung have a loophole around this new legislation. Their products can still be offered with the original operating system but must also be preinstalled with a Russian Alternative. This is what has prompted the substantial concerns of country-wide surveillance. Regardless, after the Russian Parliament approved the saw, nothing can be done to stop it from moving forward.
The Russian government provided a statement to their people through the Interfax News Agency. It was noted that when Russian Corporations purchase these electronic devices, they have already been installed with Western Applications. Parliament mentioned that their concern is that Russian people don’t think there are any domestic alternatives, which is far from reality. By promoting this legislation, we can show our people that the technology sector is growing and can combat Western Manufacturers. However, the distributors and manufacturers from Russia have provided numerous recorded accounts of criticism towards this legislation. This has indicated that the government’s statements don’t reveal this legislations legitimate purpose.
Russian Associations governing over the technology sector have been quick to publicly display their criticism towards this legislation. The Association of Trading Companies & Manufacturers for Household Computer Equipment was one of the first to express their disbelief. They mentioned how most Russian-Design software wouldn’t be installable to international devices, forcing those corporations behind those products to leave the market. The concern is that this is the real purpose of Parliament’s new legislation.
It should be noted that the Russian people have become used to invasive laws regarding technology. Throughout the last five years, there have been many laws created, allowing the government to survey search engine histories and online messaging services. The latest law applied to the internet was the sovereign requirement, which allows the government to restrict all content that isn’t from Russia.