The Ministry of Economy considers the proposals of the Ministry of Digital Transformation to tighten the requirements for the installation of technical means of operational-search activities (SORM) by telecom operators to be redundant. In particular, it is proposed to introduce turnover fines for the operator's lack of SORM in the amount of 0.01% to 0.05% of annual revenue. New operators will have to agree on a network layout before obtaining licenses, the cost of which will increase. Such measures will lead to the exit of small participants from the market, operators are sure. The Ministry of Digital Development, in turn, expects to find a compromise with business.
“Kommersant” got acquainted with the Ministry of Economy’s review of the Mintsifra’s amendments to the law “On Communications”, which toughen responsibility for operators for violations of the installation of means of operational search activities (SORM) and establish a ban on the provision of communication services by operators if technical means of countering threats (TSPU) are not installed ). The review is posted on the regulation.gov.ru portal.
The Ministry of Digital Development prepared amendments to three federal laws in early June. Amendments to the law "On Communications" also require new operators to coordinate with the FSB the scheme for building a network. Amendments to the Tax Code propose an increase in the size of the state duty on nine types of licenses for communication services - from 7.5 thousand to 1 million rubles. Amendments to the Code of Administrative Offenses introduce a turnover fine for the operator's lack of SORM in the amount of 0.01% to 0.05% of the operator's annual revenue, but not less than 1 million rubles. Now these fines range from 100,000 to 200,000 rubles. (see "Kommersant" of June 9).
Operators must install SORM as part of the implementation of the so-called Yarovaya law. In accordance with it, mobile operators and providers store all Internet traffic of their subscribers and information about calls and other data that should transfer authorities upon request.
The Ministry of Economy believes that there are no grounds for the introduction of such regulation in relation to the SORM installation, and it may lead to additional business costs.
At the same time, TSPU is set not by operators, but by Roskomnadzor, so such requirements for operators are redundant, follows from the position of the ministry. The Ministry of Digital Development reported that they are in dialogue with business and the Ministry of Economy on this issue and are trying to find a compromise. MTS, Vimpelcom (Beeline brand), MegaFon and Tele2 declined to comment.
The use of turnover fines can lead to a significant reduction in the market, since the withdrawal of significant funds will make the goal of 100% implementation of SORM unattainable, and the only option for the development of events will be the closure of the fined operator, a Kommersant source in one of the operators noted: “This will especially affect small market participants ". Large operators are also not immune from fines for non-installation of SORM - local networks can sometimes experience problems with the operation of equipment, another source in the telecom market noted: "Therefore, large companies also risk getting fines, which will negatively affect their business given the crisis."
The delay in the adoption of the new regulation will have a positive impact not only on the market, but also on the users of the operator's services, as the new requirements will inevitably lead to higher prices for the services of providers, Dmitry Petrov, CEO of the Comfortel telecom operator, believes.
A pause in tightening the requirements for installing SORM and a possible rejection of them would be useful for operators who have not yet installed the necessary equipment on their networks, says Denis Kuskov, CEO of TelecomDaily.
These are, according to him, primarily small providers. According to the expert, the manufacturers of domestic equipment, including SORM, have technological and human resources close to exhaustion due to the heavy workload due to the departure of foreign players. This led to an increase in equipment prices and an increase in the delivery time, the expert says: “Operators cannot now install SORM, even if they have the financial capacity to do so. Tighter regulation would force them out of the market.”