On the eighth floor of an ordinary-looking building in an otherwise residential district of southwest Moscow, in a room occupied by the Federal Security Service (FSB), is a box the size of a VHS player marked SORM. The Russian government’s front line in the battle for the future of the Internet, SORM is the world’s most intrusive listening device – monitoring e-mails, Internet usage, Skype, and all social networks.
In a new book, The Red Web, Andrei Soldatov and Irina Borogan peel back the history of advanced surveillance systems in Russia. They will be joining us to discuss what they found and to reveal how a free global exchange can be coerced into becoming a tool of repression and geopolitical warfare.
The surveillance culture in Russia is well documented. In the digital age as we see more protests on the streets of Moscow and elsewhere the FSB (the successor to the KGB) are developing new surveillance technologies. We will be joined by those involved in a new project called Russia’s Surveillance State and other experts to discuss the surveillance practices in Russia and how they are developing.