Russia’s Internet Crackdown Prompts Google To Pack Its Bags

Few technologies make regulation-happy government officials itch like the Internet. While Spain has been garnering headlines for taxing Google News, Russia has introduced Internet laws designed to keep data about Russian users in Russia. Google now plans to close its engineering presence in Moscow, though it will maintain other operations in Russia.

Google is pulling out of Moscow, with restrictive Russian regulations looming.
Image Credit: Google

The new rules, which will go into effect in January 2015, require tech companies to store customer data in Russia. That’s good news for Russian data storage companies, but Western companies like Google have been concerned by the regulations. Though the reason for the new rules is ostensibly the protection of Russian customers, storing user data in Russia under Russian jurisdiction worries some. 

Adobe has already pulled operations from Russia, along with other companies outside the tech sector. So far, companies have generally worked to help employees find new positions. Google employed several dozen engineers in Moscow and is helping them find other positions within the company.