Roskomnadzor, the Russian telecom watchdog, has said it will punish Facebook and Twitter if they decline to move the database of Russian users to Russia.
Roskomnadzor head, Alexander Zharov was quoted to have said this on Tuesday.
“The companies will either have to localize the databases within a certain period of time, which I suppose will be about nine months, or they will be punished,” Zharov said.
He expects Twitter and Facebook representatives to meet with Roskomnadzor officials in Moscow by the end of February to discuss the issue.
Russian legislation requires Internet service providers to store and process personal data of Russians on the territory of Russia.
Roskomnadzor has the right to impose fines on or even block Internet companies for their violations.
In December, it fined Google around $7,625 for failing to remove search links to banned information.
Last year, Roskomnadzor attempted to block instant messaging app Telegram in Russia due to its refusal to provide user data, but failed for technical reasons.