Bloomberg: Russia Plans Break From Global Web

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(Source: Bloomberg)

Russia plans next week to discuss contingency measures to cut the country off from the global Internet in what the Kremlin called a necessary step to shield the nation from the U.S.-controlled worldwide Web.

Russia’s state security council will examine ways to ensure domestic users can be redirected to servers inside the country rather than relying on the U.S.-managed Internet domain-names system, the Moscow-based Coordination Center for .RU domain said by e-mail today.

“We need to defend ourselves from the U.S. and Europe,” President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, said by phone today. “This is not about isolating ourselves, it’s about getting ready for possible cut-offs as countries that regulate the Web may act unpredictably.”

[…]Russia last month banned anonymous access to the Internet in public spaces and expanded the regulation of media to the blogosphere, requiring those with at least 3,000 daily readers to register their real names and contact information. In February the authorities had passed a law allowing them to close webpages without a court decision if material is deemed “extremist.”

Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny, who used to criticize Putin and reveal corruption among his inner circle, was the first victim of that law when his blog on was shut in March. Recent legislation requires Internet companies to store Russian users’ information on servers in the country, similar to Chinese regulations.

Click here to read the full article on Bloomberg…

I expect this will only lower Russia on the Press Freedoms Index, where they are currently number 148 out of a possible 180.

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6 thoughts on “Bloomberg: Russia Plans Break From Global Web

  1. Evgeny

    Just the opposite!
    The statement was “This is not about isolating ourselves, it’s about getting ready for possible cut-offs as countries that regulate the Web may act unpredictably.” – And you interpret this as “Russia Plans Break From Global Web”! Very clever, indeed!

    The fact is that in Russia our Internet system isn’t like China’s, it’s much more loose and decentralised, so many routes between country sites go through foreign servers. So if for example USA would disconnect us from root DNS servers – it would seriously disrupt local traffic too.

    To make system more compact and stable is very advisable in this situation. It’s not “going backwards”, it’s just a strategically safety measure, reaction to West “sanctions” etc

    1. Thomas Post author

      Hi, Evgeny,

      Thanks for your comments. You make some great points and I do believe this BBC article ( is more balanced than the Bloomberg one.

      While I I tend to air on the side of the non-conspiracy, I do think this move could make an Internet that could be more easily monitored and controlled by the government. Indeed, in 2012, Renesys evaluated and ranked countries based on how how easily they could be shut down ( Russia was labeled as “resistant” due to the fact that it is decentralized; a preferable state in a country that generally lacks press freedoms (,131.html).

      If Russia’s state security council creates an easy mechanism for all traffic to be re-routed through their own nameservers, it will effectively centralize the Internet within Russia.

      Perhaps it’ll never be used as an Internet kill switch and perhaps the Kremlin will never use it to monitor and control what citizens read when. I suppose, it’s all about how much one trusts their government who holds this power.


  2. Paul

    This is really sneaky of Bloomberg. The real story is here:

    Russia is making plans to ensure state control over the country’s internet traffic in a national emergency, Russian media report. War or an Arab Spring-style uprising would class as such an emergency


    The same idea has been discussed in the US too, see


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