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This article was published on April 8, 2011

Russian security service calls for ban on encrypted services like Gmail and Skype

Russian security service calls for ban on encrypted services like Gmail and Skype
Martin Bryant
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Martin Bryant

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Martin Bryant is founder of Big Revolution, where he helps tech companies refine their proposition and positioning, and develops high-qualit Martin Bryant is founder of Big Revolution, where he helps tech companies refine their proposition and positioning, and develops high-quality, compelling content for them. He previously served in several roles at TNW, including Editor-in-Chief. He left the company in April 2016 for pastures new.

Encrypted online communication services like Skype, Gmail and Hotmail could be under threat in Russia as the country’s Federal Security Service (FSB) sees them as a threat to national security.

AFP reports that the organisation is concerned that the foreign-made encryption technology could be used by extremist organisations within Russia and nothing could be done about it as access to them is handled by servers outside the country.

Recommendations regarding regulation of mass usage of encryption technology will reportedly be presented to the government at the start of October.

While such a ban might fit the stereotype of Russia as a censorship-heavy state, the country’s Communications Minister Igor Shchyogolev told Reuters that there were no plans for such a policy. Additionally, a Kremlin source told the news agency that the FSB’s proposal “was so radical that it did not even merit comment.”

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