At the end of 2015 and the beginning of 2016 a number of new Russian laws strengthening governmental control over the mass media and the Internet in Russia entered into force. One of these laws, amending Federal Law No. 152-FZ “On Personal Data” of 2006, obliged companies to store all personal data on Russian citizens in Russia (the ‘Localisation Law’).
According to the Russian privacy regulator (the Federal Service for the Supervision of Communication, Information Technology and Mass Media, Roskomnadzor), the aim of the Localisation Law is to ensure that the personal data of Russian citizens is protected and secured. Originally, the Localisation Law was expected to enter into force on 1 September 2016 but it actually came into force one year earlier, on 1 September 2015. Much concern has been expressed about its earlier enforcement, as companies were left with limited time to adapt to the changes introduced by the new law and were still assessing the risks of noncompliance.