Russian internet blacklist to be kept secret

The Russian public will not be informed about websites that are included in an upcoming governmental blacklist of internet destinations, a newspaper said.

Declassifying the websites would advertise them instead of hindering access to them, said a commission working on implementing the new blacklist law, Vedomosti reported.

However, web surfers visiting banned sites will be redirected to a notification page informing them that the site is blacklisted, said the commission comprising lawmakers, government officials and representatives of the internet community.

The owners of the banned websites would be notified about the ban.
An independent public group will also be appointed to monitor the blacklist.

The approach is not unique in Russia. A list of state secrets in the country is itself a state secret.

The blacklist legislation, passed in July, allows for an extrajudicial ban on websites promoting child abuse, illegal drugs and suicide. The list is to be enforced in November.

The Federal Mass Media Inspection Service already runs a blacklist of extremist materials, including websites, which comprises 1,388 entries, but items can only be added to it via a court order. The extrajudicial blacklist will complement the existing one.

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