Russia began blocking messaging services which refused to provide company information for the government’s “Register of Information Disseminators” in May 2017.
BlackBerry Messenger (BBM), LINE, Imo.im and Vchat were among the first victims blacklisted for failing to comply.
Chinese messenger WeChat was also blocked but saw the restriction lifted May 11 after cooperating with government demands.
Roskomnadzor has refused to comment on the claims, dismissing them as “rumors, spread by the media.”
Spokesperson Vadim Ampelonsky told Russia’s Interfax news agency that the organization was in “constant interaction with a number of companies.”
Telegram had 6 million active Russian users as of January 2017, up from just 2 million at the start of 2016. According to company data, 60 percent of all Telegram downloads originate in Russia.