Facebook Pays RUB 17 Million in Fines to Russia Over Banned Content

Facebook has paid RUB 17 million (roughly 1.7 crore) in fines owed in Russia for failing to delete content Moscow deems illegal, the Interfax news agency reported on Sunday, but with the threat of a potentially larger fine looming.

Facebook parent Meta, along with Alphabet’s Google, faces a court case this week for suspected repeated violations of Russian legislation on content and could be fined a percentage of its annual revenue in Russia.

Facebook did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Sunday.

Russia in October sent state bailiffs to enforce the collection of RUB 17 million in fines imposed on Facebook. Interfax said there were no more enforcement proceedings against the company as of Sunday, citing the federal bailiff service’s database.

Moscow has increased pressure on large tech firms this year in a campaign that critics characterise as an attempt by the Russian authorities to exert tighter control over the Internet, something they say threatens to stifle individual and corporate freedom.

Interfax said messaging app Telegram has also paid RUB 15 million (roughly 1.5 crore) in fines.

Telegram did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

© Thomson Reuters 2021


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