Russian court orders 'immediate' ban of Telegram

15 April, 2018, 01:29 | Author: Kristen Mcgee
  • Telegram messenger logo on a tablet screen

Friday's ruling clears the way for Russian communications regulators to order the country's ISPs to block the Telegram protocol or Telegram servers on their networks.

Russia took another step in its campaign against online privacy today, by banning the highly popular encrypted messaging app Telegram, which is owned by Russian entrepreneur Pavel Durov. The St Petersberg suicide bomber allegedly used the service to communicate with his accomplices.

The company said the way the service was built meant it has no access to customers' encryption keys. He added that FSB's demand that his client must provide access to private conversations of users is not only unconstitutional but baseless and can not be fulfilled technically and legally.

Reuters contributed reporting to this article.

The Telegram app is exceptionally popular in Russian Federation, used not only by everyday people but also government agencies.

The FSB says Telegram is used by "international terrorist organizations in Russian Federation".

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On Friday, April 6, Roskomnadzor filed a lawsuit in the Tagansky District Court of Moscow with a request to restrict access to the territory of Russian Federation of Telegram. He taunted the security agency last week by posting a photograph of two metal keys, following demands that Telegram provide encryption keys to the government.

FSB, which is the main security agency in Russia has said that Telegram is the messenger of choice for Russian-based global terrorist organizations.

He said hundreds of thousands of Russian users are forced "to study proxies and VPNs (virtual private networks)" in an attempt to circumnavigate a potential ban. "Telegram will use built-in methods to bypass blocking, which do not require action from users, although 100% accessibility of the service without VPN is not guaranteed", he wrote.

Then, the agency sent a request to Telegram's CEO Pavel Durov for providing info to decode messages of six phones that were used concerning the attack.

Telegram has been utilized by ISIS and its supporters, whatever the company claiming to have closed down many pro-ISIS channels.

"The power that local governments have over IT corporations is based on money". The trial took place without Telegram's defense team.

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