Google fined $370 million for repeated content violations
- Google was fined $370 million over its violations
- Last year, it was fined $124 million for the same kind of violations
- Google could risk losing the Russian market altogether according to a lawmaker
Google is in trouble with Russian regulators again, as it was fined $373 million by a Moscow court on Monday over the company’s failure to remove content that Russia considers illegal, according to a Reuters report.
Russia has had a combative relationship with tech companies that it says don’t toe the line over the last few years, and hasn’t been shy in meting out fines. This has got even worse ever since Russia invaded Ukraine in February on the pretext of removing ‘Nazi elements’ from the region.
Google hasn’t been the only one that has faced the ire of the Russian government. Meta and Twitter have both fallen afoul of Moscow. Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are all blocked in the country, but Google is not.
The fines from the Tagansky District Court are because Google has repeatedly failed to restrict access to banned content immediately. The court singled out YouTube in particular, saying that it had not deleted “fakes about the course of the special military operation in Ukraine, discrediting the armed forces of the Russian Federation".
The fine is calculated based on a company’s annual turnover in Russia. This isn’t the first fine of the kind that Google has paid. Last year, the search engine company had paid a $124 million fine for similar violations.
Earlier this year in May, Russian authorities seized the bank account of Google’s subsidiary, leading to the company filing for bankruptcy in the country as it was unable to pay for staff and vendors.
According to the deputy head of the parliamentary committee on information policy, Anton Gorelkin said that Google showed a complete disregard for Russian law. He wrote on Telegram that Google’s behaviour would mean that it could risk losing the Russian market altogether.