Russia began implementing a ban on popular instant messaging service Telegram in accordance with a court ruling after the app’s administrators refused to provide encrypted messages to Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB).
Russia’s state telecommunications regulator Roskomnadzor said Monday that it had sent a notice to telecommunications operators in the country instructing them to block the service.
“Roskomnadzor has received the ruling by the Tagansky District Court on restricting access in Russia to the web resources of the online information dissemination organizer, Telegram Messenger Limited Liability Partnership. In light of this, information on these online resources was sent to the operators on Monday, April 16, with regards to restricting access,” the watchdog said, according to Russia’s TASS news agency.
Roskomnadzor had previously asked a Russian court to block the service for failing to comply with Russian regulations. Moscow’s Tagansky District Court upheld the motion on April 13. Telegram, which was founded by a Russian entrepreneur, has repeatedly refused requests to give the FSB access to its users’ encrypted messages.
The service, ranked the world’s ninth most popular messaging app with over 900 million users worldwide, argued that the request for encrypted messages was unconstitutional.