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Telegram Founder Refuses To Provide User Data To Moscow

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The founder of the encrypted messaging service, Telegram, has agreed to register the platform with the Russian regulator Roskomnadzor, but will not provide user personal data to the authorities. Moscow has recently passed anti-terror legislation called the Yarovaya Package which has certain requirements technology companies must meet. Russia has threatened to block the service if Durov does not hand over the required information.

“Telegram developer’s registration data is not a secret and is available to anyone in open sources. If this is the true extent of the regulator’s wishes, I have no objections to using this data to register Telegram Messenger LLP in the register of information distributors,” he said.

“However, we will not comply with unconstitutional and technically impossible Yarovaya Package laws – as well as with other laws incompatible with protection of privacy and Telegram’s privacy policy,” Durov said, reported Russian state news agency TASS.

Durov did agree to cooperate with authorities regarding “working together to remove public materials related to the propaganda of terrorism, drugs, violence and child pornography, as well as working to curb the distribution of spam.”

“I cannot predict how this statement will affect the position of the regulator, but I am sure in one thing – if Telegram is really blocked in Russia, it will not happen because we refused to provide data about our company,” Durov added.

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