Expert opinion on the bill number 608767-7 ("On the autonomous RuNet")

    Autonomous Internet will cost the Russian budget up to 134 billion rubles.

    On December 14, 2018, the State Duma of the Russian Federation submitted a bill No. 608767-7 “On Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation (in terms of ensuring the safe and sustainable functioning of the Internet on the territory of the Russian Federation)”

    It provides for the possibility of isolated work of the Russian segment of the Network. As stated in the explanatory note, “the draft federal law has been prepared taking into account the aggressive nature of the US National Cyber ​​Security Strategy adopted in September 2018”.

    The project provides for a significant expansion of the authority of Roskomnadzor, which is entitled to manage the routers of Russian Internet providers.

    The draft law provides for the following provisions:

    1. The necessary rules for traffic routing are determined, control over their compliance is organized. It creates an opportunity to minimize the transfer abroad of data exchanged between Russian users.
    2. Cross-border communication lines and traffic exchange points are defined. Their owners, telecom operators are obliged to ensure the possibility of centralized traffic control.
    3. It is possible to install technical equipment on communication networks that determine the source of the transmitted traffic. Technical means will have to have the ability to limit access to resources with prohibited information not only by network addresses, but also by prohibiting the passage of passing traffic.
    4. An infrastructure is being created that makes it possible to ensure the operability of Russian Internet resources in the event of the impossibility of connecting Russian telecom operators to foreign root Internet servers.
    5. It introduces the need for regular exercises of government authorities, telecom operators and owners of technological networks to identify threats and develop measures to restore the efficiency of the Russian segment of the Internet.

    The authors of the bill are the head of the committee of the Council of the Federation on State Construction, Andrei Klishas, ​​his first deputy, Lyudmila Bokova, and the deputy, Andrey Lugovoi.

    The Ministry of Communications and Mass Media supported the idea of ​​the draft law as a whole: “The Internet has become too much for the state to allow itself to ignore it. Now a lot depends on the Internet economically, socially and politically, and it’s impossible to let its development go by itself. Otherwise, we may lose sovereignty, ” commented the deputy head of the ministry, Oleg Ivanov.

    In a recent interviewAlexander Zharov, the head of Roskomnadzor, said that “any country, including the Russian Federation, should be fundamentally prepared for various scenarios,” including the isolated work of the local segment.

    However, such a “basic readiness” can be costly for the Russian budget. The package of documents for the draft law includes a financial and economic rationale from one phrase: “Adoption and implementation of a federal law will not require expenses from the federal budget.” However, not everyone agrees with this.

    The Working Group “Svyaz and IT” of the Expert Council under the Government of the Russian Federation prepared a review of the text of the draft law. According to experts, only one-time costs can reach 25 billion rubles.for research and development work, the creation and maintenance of a registry of traffic exchange points, the expansion of the structures subordinated to Roskomnadzor and the holding of exercises. In addition, compensation will be required for telecom operators in the event of a network disruption, the risk of which is estimated by industry participants as high, experts say. They should be provided in the federal budget at the level of up to 10% of the market volume, that is 134 billion rubles. per year, it says in the recall.

    Experts also note that the text of the draft law does not define what the threats are for the Russian segment of the Network: “It is not clear what exactly the threats are. Neither the bill nor the explanatory note describe neither the threats themselves, nor the shortcomings of the current legislation, ”the working group recalls.

    Experts point out that the project significantly expands the powers of Roskomnadzor, and this “partially contradicts the current legislation”. Specifically, the “authority to eliminate threats to the integrity, stability and security of functioning” of the Internet is already assigned to the FSB. Roskomnadzor is also not entitled to issue acts containing requirements for communication networks.

    The members of the Expert Council working group generally consider the requirements of the draft law to be technically impracticable: the document “essentially invites telecom operators and other persons to submit to Roskomnadzor the complete scheme of their network and traffic routing in it, which is technically impossible, since the network is a live multi-level system updated.

    The project provides in some casestransfer of control of routers from telecom operators to Roskomnadzor , although the professional competence of Roskomnadzor employees is in serious doubt .

    Some experts believe that the need for isolation and effective filtering of the Runet is not required by the authorities in order to protect the Network from external aggression, but for a completely opposite purpose: to be able to turn off Network access for citizens or effectively block access to unwanted resources. For example, this may be necessary in the case of civil unrest.

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