Russian Communications Watchdog Stepping Up Fight Against Child Pornography

The agency is willing to spend $1.38 million to pay experts on the matter.

MOSCOW – Russia’s communications watchdog, Roskomnadzor, is stepping up its efforts aimed at fighting child pornography online and is willing to spend $1.38 million to pay experts on the matter.

Roskomnadzor has announced a tender for choosing a research company to review materials that are claimed to be child pornography.

“Today, Roskomnadzor employees have to deal with 150 to 200 complaints about alleged child pornography on some website(s) on a daily basis,” the communication watchdog said in a statement, adding that the agency is unable to substantially increase its staff and is therefore interested in hiring a research company to review alleged child pornography materials.

The value of the tender is $1.38 million (44 million rubles), and the bill is to be footed from the federal budget. A contract to be signed with the winner of the tender is to run through the end of 2014 and could be extended for another year.

Currently, the League of Safe Internet, a nongovernmental organization, is helping Roskomnadzor with reviewing claims about child pornography. Meanwhile, several software developers, including the well-known antivirus manufacturer Kaspersky Lab, have solutions that allow organizations to monitor web content for child pornography. However, Kaspersky isn’t planning to take part in the tender, Russian business newspaper RBK Daily reported.

Under a law enacted in Russia a year ago, websites proven to contain child pornography are to be blocked and their IPs to be blacklisted.