Russia’s new law requiring foreign Internet companies to store the personal data of users from Russia within the country's borders is likely to come into force in 2016, a senior Russian lawmaker said on Tuesday.
Discussions with Internet industry representatives will be completed within the next few weeks, said Vadim Dengin, deputy head of the State Duma Information Policy Committee. “We are engaged in a constructive dialogue with the industry. The situation should become clearer in the next two to three weeks,” Dengin said.
The law would most likely take effect in September 2016 as initially planned, the lawmaker said, adding that none of Internet companies opposed the new personal-data measures, but there were still certain questions connected with bringing data centers to Russia and providing them with security systems.
Lawmakers passed the legislation in July and gave preliminary approval last month to speed up its implementation by nearly two years, citing security concerns and increasing pressure from foreign nations provoked by the ongoing crisis in Ukraine.
The deadline, moved to January 1, 2015, from September 1, 2016, was said to create a near-impossible challenge for US-based firms that have millions of Russian users but generally store data on servers outside the country. It was reported then that the bill moving up the deadline would be returned to the lower house of parliament for a repeat reading to take into account industry concerns and that the deadline would be pushed back to the original date.
Since then, lawmakers have been in talks with industry representatives. Dengin said that by pushing the deadline Russia would allow Internet companies to adjust to the new law by potentially renting out space in Russian data centers.