Business Standard

Russia court bans Telegram messaging app

IANS  |  Moscow 

A has banned the popular messaging app after it refused to give the (FSB) keys that would grant access to user messaging data, the media reported on Saturday.

Telegram, which has more than 200 million users worldwide, is especially popular with Russia's elite. Both opposition politicians and Kremlin officials use it to stay in touch, and self-described insiders publish anonymous leaks of varying reliability from inside the halls of power, reported.

Influential users include Margarita Simonyan, the of the state-funded TV station Today, and Dmitry Peskov, Vladimir Putin's press secretary, who schedules briefings using the service.

"There are a lot of messaging services, is a very convenient one, we have been using it to communicate with journalists," Peskov said last week.

"But a law is a law, and if it is violated and no measures are taken, we will search for an alternative."

was invented by the Russian Pavel Durov, who frequently clashed with the over his social network VKontakte and left in 2014.

Durov has said publicly he will not give the FSB access to user data. He taunted the security agency last week by posting a photograph of two metal keys, following demands that Telegram provide keys to the government.

Other encrypted messaging apps, such as and Signal, remain legal in

on Thursday criticised the government's case against Telegram as an attack on freedom of expression, reports

"By attempting to block messaging app, the Russian authorities are launching the latest in a series of attacks on of expression in the country," said Denis Krivosheev, the group's for and



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First Published: Sat, April 14 2018. 11:28 IST