Russians’ personal data to stay home
Review of changes in legislation on protecting personal data: July, 2014
On July 04, 2014 the State Duma of the Russian Federation adopted the Federal Law “On amending certain legislative acts of the Russian Federation in relation to the procedure for processing personal data in information and telecommunication networks” (hereinafter the “Draft Federal Law”) in the second and third reading at once. The Draft Federal Law introduces significant changes to the current legal regulation of personal data. The following essentially new aspects should be particularly noted among others:
- When collecting personal data the operator becomes obliged to ensure that recording, systematization, accumulation, storage, clarification and retrieval of personal data of Russian citizens is done exclusively using databases located on the territory of the Russian Federation. The only exceptions from this requirement are cases of processing personal data for purposes of executing an international agreement or relevant law of the Russian Federation, serving justice and executing judicial acts, rendering state and municipal services, performing mass media activity or creative activity.
This in fact means that any foreign company using personal data of Russians abroad will be obliged to place its servers on the territory of the Russian Federation; otherwise, the access to the respective necessary information source will be blocked.
Evidently, lawmakers approved such a change in regulations without considering the financial or technical aspect of this issue: placement of a separate server on the territory of the Russian Federation is not only costly, but in some events technically impossible as well. Such a restriction can lead, in particular, to certain global internet services leaving the Russian market: according to the new provisions of the law it turns out that a Russian citizen, for instance, cannot book a flight or make a purchase on the web site of a foreign company which is unable to provide storage and processing of his or her personal data in the Russian Federation.
- A procedure has been designed for restricting access to information sources processing personal data with violation of the law. In particular, it provides for creation of the Register of violators of rights of personal data owners, containing the domain names and/or URLs of the “violator” web site pages, network addresses, information on remedy of violations, and the date information is sent about the information source to the operators for blocking it.
Additionally, the Register will also include a reference to the judicial act that has entered into force based on which the information about the violator is included in the Register and restriction of the access to the source is performed. The body authorized to control fulfillment of the legal requirements and to undertake measures on execution of the said judicial acts will be the Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Media (Roskomnadzor).
Unfortunately, taking into account the haste of the Duma’s decision on adopting this draft law, there is every reason to wait for the same to happen at the Federation Council. In this event, the amendments to the draft will come into force starting from September 01, 2016.
Draft Federal Law “On amending certain legislative acts of the Russian Federation in relation to the procedure for processing personal data in information and telecommunication networks”
Should any questions arise in connection with the above or if you need any additional materials, please contact Igor Gorokhov or Anastasia Kuzmina, Moscow Office of Capital Legal Services.
This Information letter keeps the clients of Capital Legal Services and other interested parties abreast of information that may, to any extent, affect their activity or cater to their particular interests. The opinions and commentaries expressed in this information letter shall not be deemed as legal opinions and do not cancel the need to obtain legal advice or legal opinion on separate issues.