Russian Court Bans Telegram on Heels of $1.7 Billion ICO

Pavel Durov's September 2017 post on Telegram explains why he can't visit Iran and Russia. Source Telegram

Telegram's ban may be lifted if the company turns over its encryption keys to the nation's security agencies, according to Durov.

Russian Federation has blocked more than 16 million internet protocol addresses in its attempt to ban the popular encrypted messaging app Telegram, leading to interruptions in the service of major websites and media.

Russia's Roskomnadzor watchdog began blocking Telegram, a messaging service popular in Russian Federation, on Monday after it refused to comply with a court order to grant state security services access to its users' encrypted messages.

Telegram, which was founded by a Russian entrepreneur, has repeatedly refused requests to give the FSB access to its users' encrypted messages.

A total of six IP blocks have been reported as banned in Russian Federation at the ISP level.

The quality of life for 15 million Russians will worsen as Telegram without VPN could be inaccessible at times.

Syria condemns 'brutal, barbaric aggression' by Western powers
At the time, the Pentagon claimed that a fifth of Syria's operational aircraft were either damaged or destroyed. May said while the strike was targeted at Syria, it sent a message to anyone who used chemical weapons.

Seperately, the telecoms watchdog on Monday banned today more than 1.8 million IP addresses belonging to Amazon and Google's cloud infrastructure after Telegram shifted some of its operations to AWS and Google Cloud servers over the weekend.

The "battle for Telegram" pits one of Russia's most popular messaging apps - with more than 13 million users - against the internet censor Roskomnadzor, in a public cat-and-mouse game to block traffic that has put the agency's reputation on the line.

Reuters cites Russian media reports that Roskomnadzor promptly added Telegram to its register of banned websites, but was vague about precisely when service could be interrupted.

The court's decision to block Telegram was made in the suit of Roskomnadzor, filed on April 6.

Russian Federation has acted to curb internet freedoms as social media have become the main way to organise demonstrations. But Alexander Zharov, head of Roskomnadzor, said virtual private networks would also be blocked if they are found to be connecting users to banned services.

Even if Durov changes Telegram's software to try to bypass Russia's block, "he will realize that most people just don't want to bother", Kremlin internet adviser German Klimenko said on Facebook.

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