Russian agents threaten Google and Apple representatives with imprisonment

Russian It is said that customers are targeting google And the an Apple Employees residing in the country with prison time.

Agents apparently showed up at the door of a Google executive’s home in Moscow and demanded that he remove an app from his Google Play Store at the request of Russian President Vladimir Putin, The Washington Post reports. mentioned.

Sources told the newspaper that a representative of Apple in Moscow faced similar threats.

A police officer checks his smartphone while on patrol at the entrance gate to the Embassy of Ukraine building in Moscow, Russia, Thursday, February 24, 2022. Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg (Getty Images)

Several major US technology companies based in the US have taken disciplinary action against Russia since Putin invaded Ukraine on February 24.

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Google said Thursday that it is now temporarily suspending the “vast majority” of businesses in Russia after it announced last week that Google ads will be suspended in the country. Russians can no longer subscribe to Google Clouduse Google Pay services, or monetize YouTube channels from views originating in the country.

Apple has taken steps to limit the payment service and All product sales are paused In Russia last week. Metro queues in Moscow have reportedly been backed up as Russians can no longer use Apple Pay to commute to train stations.

Other US technology companies, including Microsoft and IMB, as well as US credit card companies, have halted business in Russia.

Meanwhile, Putin has blocked Russians’ access to American social media companies Twitter and Meta, which owns Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp. He also effectively shut down the majority of independent news outlets and journalists in Russia in an attempt to control the narrative surrounding his invasion of Ukraine.

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Putin did too legislation Commonly referred to as the “Hostages Act” of 2021, which essentially forces foreign tech companies to keep employees at headquarters in Russia in order to do business there.

The relationship between the Russian government and American technology companies has grown increasingly over the past two years.

Russian President Vladimir Putin chairs a meeting with members of the Russian government by phone in Moscow on March 10, 2022 (Photo by Mikhail Klementev/Sputnik/AFP) (Getty Images)

Last year, Apple and Google removed an app called Smart Voting, which organized opposition to Putin, before the elections in September after initially refusing to do so. The companies faced similar pressure and threats from the Russian government at the time to remove the app, according to Financial Times.

Humanitarian workers and Putin critics convicted the movement. Russian leader then prison Opposition leader and app creator Alexei Navalny in February 2021. Navalny was Poisoning 2020 and narrowly escaped death.

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Google and Apple say they follow the laws of the foreign countries in which they operate. They also condemned violations of universal human rights.

The companies did not immediately respond to inquiries regarding the Postal report.

Paul Best of FOX Business and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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