Russia tests internet 'integrity' amid fears of cyberattacks

Russia tests'dominant internet for fear of internet isolation

Russia successfully disconnected from the internet

A controversial law that allows the country to cut internet traffic from worldwide servers came into force in November, but the communications ministry has denied that the government is gearing up to isolate the Russian segment of the internet and said ordinary users would not notice the tests. The administration's "sovereign internet" law - which enables content to be obstructed in an "emergency situation" - produced results in November, and President Vladimir Putin as of late marked a law that bans the sale of gadgets without pre-introduced Russian applications.

According to the law, state-run institutions and security services, as well as all communications operators, messengers and email providers, must participate in the tests, which do not affect regular Internet users.

Russia's communications minister said that successful tests show that the country that its telcos and state authorities will be able to respond to such threats while still retaining functionality of its RuNet. Tests were done on the vulnerability of the so-called Internet of Things, which must have been disheartening if Russian IoT devices have security practices as poor as USA ones.

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Runet, he said, "is aimed only at preventing adverse consequences of global disconnection from the global network, which is largely controlled from overseas".

In the past, there have been several reports about Russian Federation creating its own internet.

In the meantime, USA technology giants continue to avoid paying overseas business taxes by channeling profits into tax havens, a move France recently tried to combat only to face retaliatory tariffs from the US.

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'The larger context is Russia's dependence as a nation on imported/foreign hi-tech and the perceived vulnerabilities that Russia sees in such technology use, ' Russian expert at the American Foreign Policy Council Samuel Bendett told Defense One. The state will also have the ability to monitor/silence dissidents and protesters, online.

The switchover to Runet, the country's national internet infrastructure, was smooth and ordinary users did not notice any changes, added Russia's communication ministry.

Local news agencies, including Pravda, reported the deputy head of the Ministry of Communications saying tests of Runet had gone as planned.

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Activists are saying that it's a move to increase the censorship and the surveillance powers of the Russian government. This sort of foundation would even make it hard for VPNs to get to blocked content.

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