According to Wall Street Journal, Google Inc. is planning to close its engineering office in Russia. Russia is increasingly cracking down on internet freedom and tightening law pertaining to data handling practices.
The paper further added that Google will be retaining only a few employees who will assist the search engine giant’s sales, business partnerships, user support, marketing and communications.
The Russian parliament passed a law which will force Internet sites which store the personal data of Russian citizens to do so inside the country. The authorities say that this is necessary for data protection. However many critics say that it was an effort to control and muzzle the social networks.
The law contained draconian provisions and requires all blogs which had more than 3000 daily visits to register with a communications watchdog and a regulation allowing websites to be shut without a court order.
Google was not immediately available for comments. Google is closing its engineering unit in Russia after the Russian government introduced changes in legislation which would require technical firms to keep data of the Russian citizens in the country.
The search engine giant did not give any official reasons for the closure of its Engineering firm but the fourth estate is going to the town proclaiming that Russia is tightening controls for tech firms. The engineering office employs about 50 engineers in Moscow. Every member of the staff has been provided the option to move with Google elsewhere.
Russia and China are known for stringent censorship laws which have been enacted to gag and control Internet activity of the general public and corporations. The latest laws require the companies to store data related to Russian Citizens locally. Google was not willing to relinquish control and thought it better to stop operations in the country.cialis at walmart