Russia fines Twitch in data storage dispute

Twitch faces just under a $38,000 fine.

Image via Twitch

Video streaming platform Twitch has been fined 2 million rubles, approximately $37,700, by Moscow courts for allegedly refusing to store Russian citizens’ personal data in Russia.

On June 28, Russia issued multiple fines to big tech companies including Twitch, Pinterest, Airbnb, and the United Parcel Service (UPS). Twitch, Pinterest, and Airbnb were all fined 2 million rubles while UPS was issued a 1 million ruble penalty, all for allegedly failing to store Russian citizen data locally.

This is only Russia’s latest clash with big tech, though. The country has attempted to isolate its internet from the rest of the world since its full-scale invasion of Ukraine that started on Feb. 24. Twitch has already locked horns with Russia when the platform’s imposed sanctions prevented Russian streamers from receiving payouts. In return, the Russian government has moved to outright ban the video livestreaming platform within the country.

In an interview with Reuters, a UPS spokesperson said that the company is currently reviewing the Moscow court’s decision. Twitch, Pinterest, and Airbnb all have yet to officially comment on the situation.

These new fines only add to Russia’s mounting legal battles against tech companies. Russian communication regulator Roskomnadzor said in late May that Moscow had opened an active case against Apple and that all offending companies can be fined from 1 to 6 million rubles.

As Russia continues its military invasion of Ukraine, which recently crossed the 120-day mark, the country continues to attack massively influential Western tech companies as well. Increasing its legal conflicts with a growing number of companies, it’s unclear if Russia will actually see any of its issued fines paid.