Russia fines Google 3 million rbls for violating personal data law

FILE PHOTO: A man walks past a logo of Alphabet Inc's Google in Zurich
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MOSCOW (Reuters) -Russia on Thursday fined Google 3 million roubles ($41,017) for violating personal data legislation, Google's first fine for that offence, Moscow's Tagansky District Court said.

Google confirmed the fine and offered no further comment.

The penalty comes amid a wider standoff between Russia and Big Tech, with Moscow routinely fining social media giants for failing to remove banned content and seeking to compel foreign tech firms to open offices in Russia.

State communications regulator Roskomnadzor said last month that Google, a subsidiary of Alphabet Inc., could be fined up to 6 million roubles for not storing the personal data of Russian users in databases on Russian territory.

Russia has previously fined Google for not deleting banned content. Google has also irked the Russian authorities by blocking some YouTube accounts owned by pro-Kremlin figures and media.

A Moscow court on Thursday registered administrative proceedings against Facebook and Twitter for the same offence, the Interfax news agency reported, but did not set a court date.

Facebook and Twitter did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The two companies, fined 4 million roubles each in February 2020 for breaching Russian data law, were warned in May that they must open databases in the country by July or face fines of up to 18 million roubles.

Microsoft's LinkedIn is blocked in Russia after a court found it breached the data-storage rule, passed in 2015.

($1 = 73.1390 roubles)

(Reporting by, Maria Kiselyova, Maria Vasilyeva, Polina Ivanova and Alexander Marrow; Editing by Carmel Crimmins, Kirsten Donovan)

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