ANO “Digital Economy” criticized the FSB’s project to give law enforcement officers access to the databases of taxi aggregators

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The FSB project, which would grant 24/7 access to taxi aggregators’ information systems and databases to service employees, has been criticised by ANO “Digital Economy”. The company claims the project places significant costs on the IT industry while carrying business risks, offering no significant benefits to the state. ANO “Digital Economy” has raised concerns about the lack of detail on subjects such as electronic geolocation monitoring and payment methods, which could force taxi services to create new databases to store requested information, resulting in multi-billion costs and annual maintenance amounting to around 10% of sales.

ANO “Digital Economy” criticized the FSB’s project to give law enforcement officers access to the databases of taxi aggregators

ANO “Digital Economy” criticized the FSB project, which allows service employees to access the databases and information systems of taxi aggregators, RBC reports. The project passport was published on the website of projects of regulatory legal acts at the end of March this year. According to Digital Economy, the project imposes significant costs on the IT industry and carries risks for business in the absence of significant benefits for the state.

According to the project, car taxi services must provide a division of the FSB body 24/7 access to information systems and databases used to receive, store, process and transmit orders of taxi aggregators. This information is collected by the taxi operators belonging to the “organizers of information distribution (GRI) on the Internet”. Upon urgent FSB requests, operators must provide the requested information within three working days, normally up to ten working days.

ANO “Digital Economy” raised a number of comments regarding the project.

  • According to one of the wordings of the project, not only taxi services, but also all VRIs can be obliged to transfer information about payments and geolocation. The latter are currently required to provide the FSB and other state bodies with data on user actions, including correspondence. The list already includes more than 300 organizations, including “Yandex”, “Pikabu”, LiveJournal, Khabr, “Tinkoff Bank”, “Avito”, VK and more.

  • The concept and scope of “electronic geolocation monitoring” and whose specific geolocation (passenger or driver) needs to be transferred to the FSB are not disclosed. In addition, taxi booking services do not have the technical ability to transmit geolocation data online.

  • Geolocation monitoring duplicates the data already requested by the security authorities from cellular operators as part of operational and investigative measures.

  • The concept and scope of “means of payment” has not been disclosed. The current wording allows for the possibility of requesting unlimited financial information about users, but taxi booking services do not possess this data.

  • Taxi services will be forced to create new databases to store the information requested by the FSB, which will require additional “multi-billion costs” and about 10% of sales for the annual maintenance of the new requirements.

Similar remarks are given in the letter of Anton Danilov-Danilian, deputy head of the public organization “Business Russia”, sent to Oleksiy Khersontsev, deputy minister of economic development. Industry representatives interviewed by RBC also indicated that “the proposed resolution is not needed by the industry, but only by the FSB“, and the collected data may be of interest to the FSB “only in combination with data from other sources that this service has“. Companies assess the project as redundant.

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