The lawmakers of Russia have voted overwhelmingly to ban its soldiers across army, navy and air-force to desist using smartphones and social media during the time they are on duty to prevent tracking of its military operations by enemy powers. The Russian parliament or DUMA stated that it has approved the draft law in its Twitter post. Once the new legislation becomes law military personnel will not be able to post pictures of themselves and their colleagues online with the use of smart devices. They will not be allowed to record and distribute audios, videos and photos of themselves or share their geographical location data online on social media.
The proposal will now be put before President Vladimir Putin for formal approval. This law has been put forward by legislatures as in the past media houses have managed to expose military activities of the Russian army by tracking digital activity of its soldiers forcing the state to correct their statements when faced with evidence posted by Russian soldiers on social media. The posts by its soldiers on social media led to contradictions of government statements that Russian forces were not deployed in Ukraine and Syria.
According to a report by New York Times the draft form of the law had an explanatory note specifying the accidental exposure of Russian military’s presence in Syria in social media. The note signed by Deputy Defense Minister Nikolai stated that “information shared by soldiers on the internet or social media is used for gathering information and putting on psychological pressure on them and in some cased is used to make biased assessment of Russia’s state policy. According to a report published in the Guardian, Duma military committee member Vladimir Bogodukhov, Russia was defenseless if its private information including government and military details were not protected from its partners that could use it for their benefit.