Russia Plans to Get Disconnected From the Internet

Russia could be considering an extreme test for its cyber defenses.


Russia could be considering an extreme test for its cyber defenses. This test would involve disconnecting the entire country from the network of networks in a momentary way. In this way, all the data of Russian citizens and organizations would remain inside the country in a kind of gigantic intranet.

“Russia is expected to carry out a test to isolate it from the Internet before April 1, although there is no definite date yet.”

The origins of this idea can be found in a draft law drafted last year that sought to establish the technical requirements for this kind of operation. The draft law, called the National Digital Economy Program, urges all Internet providers in the country that have technical capabilities to operate in case foreign powers isolate Russia from the international online community.

It is not about unfounded fears. Various supranational organizations, including NATO, have threatened Russia with sanctions after alleged cyberattacks carried out by the Kremlin. They are accusations that Russia faces regularly, so the possibility of reprisals is high.

If the test is carried out, Russia would need to create its own DNS addresses so that its Internet will continue to function in case other DNS is vetoed in Russia. Currently, there are 12 organizations that watch over DNS, and none of them are based in Russia.

The test also aims to make all information managed by Internet providers pass through points controlled by the Kremlin, so that the data is filtered so that they do not reach computers located abroad. This could be the beginning of a censorship system similar to that which exists in China.

That yes, to carry out this test, the Russian government is providing money to Internet providers to update their infrastructure.