Russia is preparing another law restricting freedom on the Internet
In Russia, uncontrolled use of VPN solutions and proxy services has already acquired the characteristics of criminal activity. In order to gain access, VPN operators should, in accordance with the Censorship Act, be able to block certain websites on the VPN. They must also be able to transfer user data of individual VPN services on demand, which many providers are not able to share, because they do not collect this type of data.
Telegram on censored
For several weeks, the Russian government made efforts to ban the use of encrypted messengers. The first goal became the messenger Telegram messenger - ironically, originating from Russia. After the operators refused to send the keys to the Russian security services (which would be equivalent to the opening of access to the communicator for the authorities of the back gate), IP blockades aimed at limiting the use of the Telegram were introduced. The authorities admit, however, that this action ended with an incomplete success. Subsequently, the Russian authorities tried to put pressure on Apple and Google to remove Telegram from their local app stores.
In this case, we have a similar procedure to that used for VPN technology. The same arguments are presented that the application would be used to plan and coordinate terrorist activities, which is why the authorities must control it. Russian laws do not prohibit the use of VPN services and coding themselves, but they consider them outdated: they would like to be able to identify users. However, VPNs are supposed to prevent this. Russian legislators want all communicators to be associated with telephone numbers that can be clearly assigned to a given user.
In Germany, also steps have been taken to allow law enforcement agencies to monitor in justified cases encrypted communication channels and take over messages. The police law in Bavaria directly addresses this issue; this issue is also addressed in the draft police act for North Rhine-Westphalia.
Acute criticism of experts on VPN delegation
Many other IT security experts consider this procedure to be absolutely dangerous and pointless. Many people have already criticized the VPN law. There is no evidence that criminal activity would drop as a result of supervision. In addition, activities such as the ban on encrypted communication have a long-lasting negative impact on citizens' trust in the government. That is why it is very important to openly and above all to publicly discuss this topic, and this is not the case, although it would be the most appropriate approach at the moment.
What is also disturbing is the fact that public response to planned activities of this type is so limited (compared to discussions on similar topics in the past). It also shows that many people have had enough of talking about this issue - some even say that they prefer to accept a little more uncertainty if it translates into a subjective sense of security. Experts from G Data explain that regular interventions in the private sphere are almost every time justified by alleged security issues, should raise doubts and ask who actually profits from these regulations. There are new threats appearing on the internet every now and then, but they should not be taken as a reason to exceed the privacy of users.
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