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Telecom companies of Russia’s Big Four say no possibility to wiretap conversations

July 17, 2013, 16:45 UTC+3

Officials at Rostelecom are also confident that major leaks of personal data from Russian mobile operators are impossible

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MOSCOW, July 17 (Itar-Tass) - None of the major Russian cellular telephony operators - MTS, MegaFon or VimpelCom /running the Beeline trade mark/ - maintain cooperation with third parties or furnish them with an opportunity to bug the customers’ telephones, company executives said Wednesday at a conference that looked into a possibility of foreign intelligence services access to the Russians’ telephone conversations.

Anna Serebryannikova, MegaFon’s director for legal issues and relations with legislative and executive agencies of power said all the services provided by the operator are strictly regulated by law.

“We ensure a hundred percent privacy of communications and full protection of personal data,” she said with assuredness.

Serebryannikova added to it, however, that this does not concern the subscribers to other services, for instance, Facebook or Skype.

“We don’t know this and don’t have access to them,” she said. “We simply see the IP traffic that flows through our nets and the fact quite naturally puts us in the face of threats and problems,” she said.

VimpelCom executives, too, said the company lives up to all the requirements specified in Russia’s legislation.

“Our services have reliable protection but we can’t guarantee equally reliable protections for the services coming from servers abroad,” Dmitry Kononov, the chief of VimpelCom’s department for coordination with the agencies of state power said.

Officials at Rostelecom are also confident that major leaks of personal data from Russian mobile operators are impossible.

“I just can’t imagine a big or even a small cellular operator who would accept encroachments on legislation of this type and would start giving out data to anyone,” said Eduard Vassilenko, Rostelecom’s director for technological strategies. “I think this is impossible for anyone because the risks for business will be too high then.”

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