Telegram Says Apple Has Prevented It From Updating Since April

Jun 02, 2018, 01:10
Telegram Says Apple Has Prevented It From Updating Since April

Even after a Russian court ruled that the app should be blocked in Russian territories, Telegram refused to hand over encryption keys that would give Russian officials access to user data.

Apple has stopped approving Telegram for iOS updates globally, according to CEO Pavel Durov.

Pavel Durov, who co-founded Telegram with his brother Nikolai Durov in 2013, said that Apple sided with Russian Federation after the company refused to provide decryption keys for users' communications to the country's security agencies.

"We believe we did the only possible thing, preserving the right of our users to privacy in a troubled country", Durov said earlier today. "We are continuing our efforts to resolve the situation", he said. Russia's Federal Security Service wanted access to Telegram's users' encrypted messages, saying it was necessary to monitor potential terrorists.

On Friday, the GDPR user data and privacy protection law went into effect in Europe, which is why your email inbox was spammed by all the online services you're subscribed to.

At the time, Durov said Apple didn't side with Telegram.

A month later, Telegram continues to be available on the App Store.

Apple's as-yet-unexplained blocking of Telegram updates means that, following the recent release of iOS 11.4, some existing features such as Stickers are no longer functional.

An Apple spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Mr. Durov's statement. It's not clear what the consequences would be if it failed to do so. It has also prevented Telegram from complying with the new European Union GDPR.

Its hopping had the unintended outcome of RKN knocking out entire swathes of IP addresses to stop Telegram, some 19 million at its peak, causing a number of other services to go down as well. It has attracted more than 200 million users since its launch by Durov and his brother Nikolai in 2013. Downloads as tracked by AppAnnie, in fact, seem to point to a slight dip in downloads in Russian Federation after the RKN blocks started in April, although those numbers only count App Store downloads. But it seems the impact of those demands is being felt worldwide.

Russian authorities have ordered domestic internet service providers to block the app, causing disruption of other services but failing to shut down Telegram in the country.