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Russian MPs approve controversial bill restricting internet

AFP  |  Moscow 

Russian lawmakers on Thursday approved in a key second reading a controversial bill that would allow to cut off the country's from foreign servers.

Lawmakers in the State Duma, parliament's lower house, voted 320 to 15 to pass the proposed bill.

It is set to take effect on November 1 once it formally becomes law.

The proposed measures would create technology to monitor internet routing and steer Russian away from foreign servers, ostensibly to prevent a foreign country from shutting it down.

Authors of the initiative say must ensure the security of its networks after US unveiled a new American cybersecurity strategy last year that said had carried out cyber attacks with impunity.

The legislation has been dubbed a "sovereign internet" bill by Russian media. Critics say implementing the measures would be expensive and give vast censorship powers to the government's new traffic monitoring centre.

"It's a bill on digital slavery and the introduction of censorship for the web," said Sergei Ivanov, a member of the nationalist Liberal-

The bill's authors insist however that the measures only outline a plan to make Russian internet "more secure and reliable".

"The bill's popular name -- 'The Chinese Firewall' -- has nothing to do with our initiative," said Leonid Levin, a lawmaker from the ruling United party which dominates

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, April 11 2019. 15:25 IST