A new bill has been proposed in the Russian legislature that could grant the permission to isolate Russia’s internet from the rest of the world.
There is a “Sovereign Internet” bill which seeks to tighten its grip on how information flows in and out of the country. Under this bill, new centralized hubs will be set up to manage (read manipulate) the flow of information or even halt it.
The bill also proposes a national domain name system that would allow a local intranet to continue its operation even if Russia is cut off from the global internet.
Advocated by President Vladimir Putin and other Moscow lawmakers, this bill is currently being pushed through the parliament.
“They sit there, it’s their invention, and everyone listens, sees and reads what you say,” says Putin. “The more sovereignty we have, including in the digital field, the better. This is a very important area.”
The Sovereign Internet bill is being deemed as Putin’s defensive response to the Trump Administration’s new cyber strategy — which permits the U.S. to take offensive measures against Russia and any other country known for committing malicious activities online.
However, the Bloomberg report also mentions that the law isn’t just aimed at foreign threats or banning Facebook and Google, which the country can already do legally.
Authorities in Russia are advocating this bill as they see centralized controls as a way to control information during times of civil unrest within Russian borders.