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Russian telecom watchdog to audit Facebook, WhatsApp by December 2018

May 24, 2018, 12:30 UTC+3

The services will be checked for their compliance with the Russian legislation

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© Sergei Konkov/TASS

MOSCOW, May 24. /TASS/. Russia's telecom watchdog, the Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media, plans to scrutinize Facebook’s and WhatsApp’s compliance with Russian legislation, the watchdog’s chief, Alexander Zharov, told TASS on the sidelines of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum on Thursday.

"We are determined to carry out a complete audit of the Facebook company and, possibly, the WhatsApp messenger on the territory of Russia for their compliance with our legislation, the localization of our citizens’ databases on our country’s soil and compliance with laws concerning the removal of prohibited content. So, based on the outcome of this audit, a decision will be made," Zharov vowed.

Earlier, he told the media that Facebook would be blocked in Russia just as the social network Linkedin, if it refuses to comply with personal data laws.

Russia’s personal data law took effect on September 1, 2015. It obliges both Russian and foreign companies to keep Russians’ personal data on Russian soil.

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