Russian Federation orders immediate block of Telegram messaging app

Alexander Scherbak  TASS

In a dispute over access to messages to fight terrorism, a Russian court order blocked the messaging app Telegram on Friday.

The Russian telecom watchdog, Roskomnadzor, said in a statement that it has sent internet and mobile operators a notification about blocking access to Telegram inside Russia.

Russia's state media watchdog Roskomnadzor asked the court to ban Telegram "immediately" after its ruling. He also said that the agency would soon address the App Store and Google Play with official demands to make the downloading of Telegram's applications impossible in Russian Federation. According to the court, Telegram will remain blocked in the country until it provides encryption keys to Russian authorities.

After it developed its own blockchain platform which was unveiled on April 13, Telegram has become the main dependable encrypted messenger for the Russian cryptocurrency industry.

In a social media post on Russia's VKontakte, Durov said Telegram will use "built-in methods" to try and circumvent the government attempts to block the app.

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Durov who fled the country in 2014 said that the company has "the luxury of not caring about revenue streams or ad sales". Unfortunately it seems that it is this level of security and privacy that has resulted in the app getting banned in Russian Federation.

Roskomnadzor is taking action on Telegram's repeated refusal to comply with Russian law and hand over the encryption keys to its messaging service.

TWEET: Can we ban karaoke instead of Telegram?

Telegram was launched by two brothers Nikolai and Pavel Durov back in 2013 and the team is now based in Dubai with an estimated 200 million monthly active users as of March 2018.

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