Catering points are getting connected to Kipod: Examining the gutter press info-bombing

One of the Internet resources, blocked for access from the territory of the Republic of Belarus, published an article in which, with a claim to be sensational, it “rediscovered” long-known facts about the Republican Public Security Monitoring System (RPSMS), presenting them in an upside-down form, as well as trying in vain to calculate the company’s income from this project. It is unlikely that these “Polichinelle secrets” would have been worthy of attention if excerpts from them had not become scattered over Telegram channels and social networks. In this connection, we consider it necessary once again to clarify some information about RPSMS, which is based on the Kipod smart city platform from Synesis.

  1. The principle of connection to the system is described in the Regulations on the functioning of the Republican system for monitoring public safety of November 1, 2019, which is publicly available. The list of objects connected to the system is determined by Decree № 527 of 28.11.2013, Resolution of the Council of Ministers of 31.01.2014 № 89, as well as lists made by regional executive committees and Minsk City Executive Committee. Representatives of the company mentioned the existence of these documents and their publicity in numerous interviews. In the article under review, the information is presented as if the requirements for connecting facilities arise chaotically, have no legal basis and are a consequence of post-election events. And such facts that the institutions which agree their work at night, it is logical to have special requirements to ensure safety, the authors are not even considered. Moreover, this is already the second attempt by this resource to play on this topic in the last month: the first one failed and didn’t get enough followers. This inverted, distorted and assiduous presentation of material explains why this site is rightfully considered as a gutter press.
  2. When calculating other people’s budgets, we recommend that “analysts” to pay attention not only to the cost of the service, but also to the provider’s expenses necessary to provide this service. If the authors of the article had understood what the cost of the service is and what the actual number of connected cameras is, they would have objectively called the project unprofitable. In fact, the material is presented as if Synesis has an incredible commercial benefit from the implementation of the RPSMS project, which again deliberately misleads naive readers.
  3. Yes, the private company Synesis does operate on a commercial basis, i.e. it does not provide its services free of charge (except for charitable and volunteer projects). This came as a complete surprise to the “analysts”. As well as the fact that the project of a large international IT-company has a monthly revenue (not to be confused with profit) in Minsk – attention! – 27,130 Belarusian rubles, or $10,343 (again, according to the calculations of “analysts”). This fact, along with others, is presented by the authors in an inverted form, again deliberately misleading naive readers.

This is not the first material written about Synesis in this format. A resource that claims to be “European values and impartiality” (judging by its name), with enviable regularity discredits those very values and publishes all kinds of fakes and factoids about the company and its activity, translating them into all kinds of languages, but never publishing the company’s own comments explaining its position. This deliberately creates a negative image of the company, which is then broadcast by anonymous Telegram-channels and technically/economically unskilled readers. Later on, this kind of material becomes the “evidence base” for the Council of the European Union regarding sanctions against Synesis.

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