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Russia partially restricts access to Facebook over censorship claims

Russia is partially restricting access to Facebook. Telecom regulator Roskomnadzor says the move is in response to parent company Meta restricting the official accounts of four Russian media outlets. It said Meta was violating Russian law by doing so.

Roskomnadzor asked Meta for an explanation and to remove the restrictions on Thursday. After the company "ignored" the demands, officials decided to restrict access to Facebook, a measure Roskomnadzor says is in accordance with the law. The watchdog claims to have recorded 23 cases of "such censorship of Russian media and Internet resources by Facebook" since October 2020 (per a Google Translate version of its announcement).

The extent of these restrictions on Facebook is not yet clear. Engadget has asked Meta for comment.

Reports suggest Russia tried to spread propaganda and misinformation for weeks in the lead up to its invasion of Ukraine. According to NBC News, experts expect the level of disinformation to increase significantly.

As the invasion began on Thursday, Facebook enabled its "lock profile" tool in Ukraine to help residents protect their accounts. Twitter's Safety team, meanwhile, shared some tips in Ukrainian on how to keep accounts secure.

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