Putin: The internet is a CIA project

The Kremlin is seeking to increase its control over the internet

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The Independent Online

Not content with eying up the physical land surrounding Russia, Vladimir Putin is now seeking to draw a net around the internet, which he this week labelled a "CIA project".

The Kremlin has been anxious to exert greater control over the web recently, which activists who oppose it (now barred from national television) have used to organise protests and spread their ideas.

The Russian parliament recently passed a law requiring social media websites to keep their servers in Russia and store all information about their users for a minimum of six months.

VKontakte meanwhile, Russia's largest social network, is now under the control of businessmen close to Putin.

The president said at a media forum in St. Petersburg this week that the internet was originally a "CIA project" and "is still developing as such".

Putin added that Russia needs to "fight for its interests" online.

It has been a rocky week for the internet one way or another, with the FCC now reportedly mulling over a 'two-speed internet' that would allow companies to pay for faster access to their websites and services, potentially compromising net neutrality.