Russian Government Asked Google, Apple To Remove Telegram From Stores

Russia to enforce nationwide ban on Telegram app

Russia's media regulator has blocked more than 4 million IP addresses after a court approved its request to shut the app down.

The Russian Communications Agency on Monday began enforcing a court ban on the messaging app Telegram over its refusal to hand over encryption keys.

Users in Russian Federation reported that Telegram still remains online.

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Roskomnadzor, Russia's telecommunications watchdog, banned today over 1.8 million IP addresses belonging to Amazon and Google's cloud infrastructure.

Andrei Soldatov, the co-author of The Red Web, an authoritative account of internet surveillance in Russian Federation, said the campaign showed a no-holds-barred approach unconcerned with political fallout.

Telegram is used by more than 200m users across the world, and prides itself on its high level of security. "Once you cross the line, you can do anything".

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Though the Russian authorities have instructed all Internet Service Providers in Russia to comply with the court ruling, Telegram can still appeal the court's decision within a 30-day window.

On Monday evening, according to Anti-Corruption Foundation activist Vladislav Zdolnikov, Roskomnadzor added four "subnet masks" to its "out-load list", which specifies the domains and websites Russian Internet providers are required to block, according to Meduza. Protests over the blocking of Telegram continue in Russian Federation.

"There is a certain legislation that demands certain data to be passed to certain services of the Russian Federation", he said.
Telegram CEO Pavel Durov remained defiant and said his company will take measures to avoid the blocks. Telegram is a big competitor to WhatsApp in Russia and it is to be noted that the social networking sites and apps from the US could not overcome the Russian apps and sites inside Russia.

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He also announced he would donate millions of dollars in cryptocurrency to companies helping to promote VPNs and proxies, calling it the "digital Resistance". Telegram had fought to have that deemed unconstitutional, but lost a bid in Russia's Supreme Court last month.

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