Russia fines Google 15 million rubles for data storage violations
Russian courts fined Google again on Tuesday for not storing the personal data of Russian users - within Russia. The latest fine amounts to 15 million rubles (approximately US$167,900, or €154,800), and is part of a series of penalties imposed on the tech giant by the Russian government.
This fine follows Google's previous fines in August 2021 and June 2022 for the same offence. Foreign companies must store Russian citizens' data locally under Russia's data localization law.
Google's inability to comply with the data localization law stems from its effective shutdown of operations in Russia following Moscow's invasion of Ukraine in 2022. The company filed for bankruptcy in Russia after its bank account was seized by authorities, rendering it unable to pay staff and suppliers.
Russia's crackdown on Western tech companies extends beyond Google. In August, Apple was fined 400,000 rubles (approximately US$4,480 or €4,100) for failing to remove material on Apple Podcasts that Russian authorities deemed false.
Similarly, Wikipedia was fined 3 million rubles (approximately US$33,500 or €31,000) for the same offence. These fines reflect Russia's efforts to control the narrative surrounding the Ukraine conflict and suppress dissenting voices.