Russian Federation is getting closer to banning Telegram

Times' lead article questioning govt’s ‘alliance against Russia’ vanishes but URL remains

Times' lead article questioning govt’s ‘alliance against Russia’ vanishes but URL remains

Telegram is the ninth-most-popular messaging app in the world, boasting over 200 million active users.

As part of its services, Telegram allows users to communicate via encrypted messages which can not be read by third parties, including government authorities.

Roskomnadzor said Friday that it had filed the lawsuit against Telegram at Moscow's Tagansky District Court. FSB claimed that terrorists had been using the app to plan an attack, and the needed access to it in the name of national security. Telegram has refused to comply with its demands, citing respect for user privacy. Durov has steadfastly refused, even as the Russian government has been threatening to ban Telegram if he didn't cooperate. Nonetheless, he added, "the law is the law".

Telegram's self-exiled Russian founder Pavel Durov has long said he will reject any attempt by the country's security services to gain backdoor access to the app.

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"In Russia we have many problems - from poverty to very bad state of the roads, from crime to poor medical care", opposition leader Alexei Navalny said via Twitter. Co-founder Pavel Durov, who lives in self-imposed exile overseas, said after the Supreme Court ruling that his company would not provide the FSB with encryption keys.

However, as in Iran, such restrictions can be easily bypassed through the use of a virtual private network (VPN) or proxy server, which can funnel a user's data through a country where the service is not blocked. "The company considers it its duty to stand for the privacy of its users", he stressed.

Earlier this week, another Telegram lawyer, Dmitry Dinze, told reporters that the company had notified Roskomnadzor that the FSB's requirement was not feasible for technical reasons, however, Roskomnadzor said in a press release that they had not received any official response from Telegram.