03:31 GMT06 March 2021
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    Edward Snowden has once again taken to Twitter to denounce Russia's new anti-terrorism law, more commonly known as the Yarovaya Law, named after its creator, State Duma Deputy Irina Yarovaya.

    The former NSA contractor, who leaked thousands of classified documents revealing, among other things, large-scale US government surveillance programs in 2013, expressed his concern with what he called "Russia's Big Brother law". 

    ​​The bill, signed into effect by President Putin on July 7th, includes a number of hotly-debated points, including an obligation for all communication companies and internet providers to store traffic information. Social networks and messenger services would be required to retain traffic information for at least a year, and keep records of phone calls and texts for six months. 

    Telecom companies would also be required to hand over encryption keys to state security agencies, and face fines if they refuse to comply. Russia's three major communication companies seem to agree with Snowden, calling the measure 'extreme'. 

    Irina Yarovaya, the head of the lower house of parliament's Security and Anti-Corruption Committee, however, stated that the bill doesn't oblige telecom companies to store information immediately — it simply gives the government the power to do so, and also decide what kind of data, if any, should be stored. She also dismissed claims from Russian cell service providers that adopting the bill would result in a threefol price hike for cell and internet services. 

    ​Snowden, however, remains unconvinced.  


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    anti-terrorism legislation, legislation, Edward Snowden, Irina Yarovaya, Moscow, Russia
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