Reuters reports that a Moscow court has fined Apple 400,000 roubles (about US$4,274) for not deleting “inaccurate” content about what Russia calls a “special military operation” in Ukraine, according to the TASS news agency.
This is just the latest brush-up between the tech giant the the Russian government. In March 2022 Apple stopped all sales at its Russian online store due to the country’s Ukraine invasion. In September 2022, the tech giant removed the iOS apps belonging to VK, the technology conglomerate behind Russia’s version of Facebook called VKontakte, from its App Store globally due to the latest round of UK sanctions on the country.
In February 2023 Apple had to pay a $12 million fine in a a Russian antitrust case alleging abuse of its dominance in the mobile apps market, Russia’s Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) said.
The FAS claimed that Apple “prohibits iOS app developers from telling clients inside the app about the possibility of paying for purchases outside the App Store or using alternative payment methods.” Apple attempted to prevent the regulator from investigating the App Store in April, but it was dismissed by the court system.
On July 12, 2022, a Moscow court fined Apple 2 million roubles (about $33,900) for allegedly refusing to store the data of Russian citizens on Russian territory, the Interfax news agency reported.
Last month Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) claimed that it cooperated with American spies to surveil iPhone users in the country. In a statement, Apple said it has “never worked with any government to insert a backdoor into any apple product and never will.”
The RSS claimed that Apple works closely with US intelligence, particularly the National Security Agency. The attacks were linked to SIM cards registered with Russia-based diplomats for NATO countries, Israel and China, according to the statement.