Russia admits to blocking millions of IP addresses

The chief of the Russian communications watchdog has admitted to blocking access to millions of IP addresses in a so-far-futile attempt to block a popular messaging app.

The Russian communications agency on Monday began to enforce a court ruling to block Telegram after the messaging app refused to hand its encryption keys to the intelligence agencies.

Telegram has defied the ban and is trying to keep the app available in Russia.

Alexander Zharov, chief of the Federal Communications Agency, told the Izvestia daily Wednesday that Russia is blocking 18 subnets used by Amazon and Google hosting sites that they believe Telegram is using to circumvent the ban. Internet experts estimated that Russian authorities have blocked about 16 million IP addresses since Monday, affecting millions of Russian users and businesses.