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Again, Russia fines Google for not removing “illegal content”

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Foreign tech giants have continued to face mounting pressure in Russia as a Moscow court has again fined Google for failing to remove content banned in the country.

Russia in recent months has been taking legal action against foreign tech companies for not deleting content banned by the authorities, including pornographic material or posts deemed extremist or condoning drugs or suicide.

According to the official Telegram channel of Moscow courts, the Tagansky district court on Thursday slammed Google with three fines totalling six million rubles ($80,850) for the violation.

Earlier this week, the US company was hit with five other fines totalling 14 million rubles over the same charges.

Last month Google was fined three million rubles for breaching data storage laws.

According to the RIA Novosti news agency, Google has so far been fined 32.5 million rubles in Russia.

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It was the first time the company was penalised under the controversial law that requires the personal data of Russian users to be stored on servers within Russia.

Moscow has recently ramped up pressure on foreign tech companies, especially social networks, after accusing them earlier in the year of not removing posts calling for minors to join protests in support of jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny.

Also, Facebook has been handed fines for failing to remove illegal content.

In recent years, the Russian government has also been tightening control over the internet under the pretext of fighting extremism and protecting minors.

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