27.05.2021

Alexander Hinstein: Internet access by passport is currently not on the agenda

Alexander Hinstein: Internet access by passport is currently not on the agenda

Moscow. May 27. INTERFAX.RU

On Friday, the document will be discussed by the State Duma Committee on Information Policy, Information Technology and Communications. To a meeting were invited not only the search engines (Google, Bing), social networks (Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter), video hosting platforms (YouTube, Twitch) and messengers with mail networks (from Telegram to Gmail) but also hosting providers, online trading services and Wikipedia. The list of invitees also includes Aliexpress, Amazon, Aliexpress and Ikea.

The head of the committee, Alexander Khinshtein, in an interview with Interfax correspondents Andrei Novikov and Alexei Kurilov, explained why the list included online trading platforms and the famous Internet encyclopedia, whether it is worth waiting for new slowdowns and blockings, whether Facebook and Google will pay turnover fines and how he sees refusal of anonymity on the network.

- You were saying that there are complaints about WhatsApp and you will discuss them with Roskomnadzor. Roskomnadzor notes that in principle there are no complaints about WhatsApp. Will there be any development?

- The decision-making authority belongs to Roskomnadzor as a regulator. If they don't see violations, that's very good.

- Concerning Google and Facebook. You have mentioned that it is possible for these resources to slow down if they do not filter content. Under what conditions can such measures be taken, and are Russian authorities considering such measures?

- I am not aware of these plans. From the very beginning, while developing a law on resisting Internet censorship, which provides for response measures in the form of slowing down or completely blocking traffic, we were claiming that it is an emergency measure, and we expect that it will not be applied at all.

Therefore, we definitely have no desire to block someone, but the state has such powers today. The state can react and turn on these mechanisms today based on the requirements of the law in case of violation of the fundamental rights and freedoms of citizens. If those are established, then the state will have such a right. But I repeat, we still hope that this will not happen. 

- Yesterday at the board of Roskomnadzor you said that it is necessary to actively engage in the deanonymization of the Internet. How do you imagine it? Will it be necessary to provide a passport to the operator of the postal service, to register in social networks with the help of "GosUslugi"?

- No, today question of registration and accessing the Internet with a passport is out the agenda. At least for the present period.

But in general, I am a supporter of the Internet gradually becoming a de-anonymized environment, and this must be achieved not by prohibitions and harsh repressive measures, but by creating certain conditions and forming a culture of communication and behavior on the Internet. And this organically correlates with the proposal of Roskomnadzor, which we support, to conduct psychological testing of users of social networks so that the network owners themselves conduct such monitoring, identifying individuals potentially prone not only to some kind of deviant, inappropriate behavior on the network, but also in general, to commit any illegal actions. 

- How can such a culture of deanonymization be formed?  

- Through different tools. In my opinion, it should just become unfashionable and indecent - to hide behind a pseudonym. Because when a person is confident in himself and in his righteousness, he does not need to hide his real face. But - I repeat - today we are not talking about the fact that this should be done in a directive and ultimatum order.