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Washington Times: Edward Snowden decries Russian surveillance bill as dangerous, urges Putin not to sign

Washington Times: Edward Snowden decries Russian surveillance bill as dangerous, urges Putin not to sign

By Andrew Blake – The Washington Times
Sweeping new surveillance measures approved by lawmakers in Russia this week were denounced Saturday by one of the country’s most well-known residents: former NSA contractor Edward Snowden.

Responding to an expansive package of legislative proposals passed Friday in the State Duma, Mr. Snowden took to Twitter early Saturday to urge President Vladimir Putin to not sign the measures into law.

“Russia’s new Big Brother law is an unworkable, unjustifiable violation of rights that should never be signed,” Mr. Snowdentweeted.

If authorized by Mr. Putin, the measures would require telecommunication companies and internet providers to record the content of its customers’ conversations and make them available to law enforcement for up to six months. Other records concerning those communications, known as metadata, would have to be kept for upwards of three years.

Additionally, the legislation would effectively ban the use of digital encryption and introduce new penalties for individuals who use social media to make “public statements recognizing the ideology and practices of terrorism to be [morally] correct.”

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