Meta, Facebook’s parent company is now on Russia‘s extremists list
Russia’s Federal Service for Financial Monitoring added Meta Platforms Inc., the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, to its list of “terrorist and extremist” organizations. According to reports, Rosfinmonitoring's designation could result in up to ten years in prison for "sponsoring extremism" for Russian citizens and businesses that purchase advertisements from Facebook or Instagram.
In March, Russia took down Meta's Facebook and Instagram accounts after authorities said that Meta was an "extremist" who tolerated "Russophobia. Meta filed an appeal against the decision, but a Moscow court rejected this appeal.
Although many Russians continue to use virtual private networks (VPNs) to access Facebook and Instagram, Russia has restricted access to the platforms since March. According to an Atlas VPN report, VPN installs in Russia reached an all-time high following the ban, resulting in a 10,000 percent increase in demand. Russian prosecutors have already started sending warning letters to citizens about the administrative or criminal consequences of using Facebook and Instagram.