Telegram remains elusive for Roskomnadzor's officials

Block the messenger until it was physically impossible.
The ineffectiveness of the current attempts to block Telegram forces Roskomnadzor to look for new ways: the blacklisting of millions of records did not stop the messenger, but overloaded the equipment of regional providers. As it became known to Kommersant, on April 18 the agency gathered representatives of telecom operators to discuss the further strategy. So far, no solutions have been found. But Roskomnadzor sharply reduced the activity of locks, although they, according to the agency's own estimates, do not cost him extra resources.

In Roskomnadzor April 18 a meeting with representatives of the largest telecom operators, the main topic of which was the blocking of Telegram, told Kommersant three sources in the industry. According to the interlocutors of Kommersant, more effective ways of fighting Telegram were discussed, although as a result no decisions were taken.

It was a working meeting, confirmed a major federal official. In the press center of Roskomnadzor, however, insist that information about holding a meeting with operators on the subject of Telegram's blocking is "not true."

The messenger lock began on April 16, but Telegram shies by changing the IP addresses of the mobile version and hosting providers. As a result, on April 16-17, almost 20 million IP-addresses of cloud services Amazon and Google, which Telegram used, got to the black list of Roskomnadzor. This caused, among other things, the blocking of random sites. But the "degradation" of the mobile version of the Telegram itself was only about 20%, the employee of one of the telecoms operators states.

As a result, on April 18 Roskomnadzor changed tactics. The rate of the messenger blocking decreased, only about 130 thousand addresses were added to the register, the general director of the hosting provider "Dense Forest" Philip Kulin told Kommersant.

Inclusion in the register of millions of IP-addresses before this caused interruptions in the system of blocking prohibited sites, market participants say. According to, on April 18 Internet service providers received a letter from Roskomnadzor "with an urgent request to restart the hardware and software complex" Inspector ", which is used to monitor access to prohibited sites. "The" Inspector "hanged because of the huge number of IP-addresses that were included in the register of banned," - says In the Roskomnadzor itself, hangup is denied. "There were no problems in the work of the" Inspector "system. The letters were not sent to the operators on behalf of Roskomnadzor. "The Inspector" is functioning in the regular mode, "the ministry assured.

But the technical difficulties in connection with the blocking of Telegram are confirmed by the developers of traffic filtering systems. "Some providers using our solution for filtering sites on the Roskomnadzor list applied to the technical support service on Wednesday," Dmitry Khomutov, deputy director for development of Aideko, confirmed to Kommersant. "In the morning there was a failure in the work of the site of Roskomnadzor, where the filtering lists are downloaded. Later, many providers, in particular from the Sverdlovsk region, were recommended to restart the "Inspector", due to the massive overload of devices due to the growing list of locks, "he explained.

The problem is that a number of large Russian operators are using the outdated method of filtering, says CEO Sergei Nikulin. As the number of entries in the blacklist that their routers need to process increases, the likelihood of denial of service increases, as the devices are simply not designed for these kinds of tasks, he notes. "To avoid failures, providers manually limit the number of filtered subnets, which does not have the best effect on the quality of the filter," says Mr. Nikulin.

The current Telegram blocking algorithm has already been tested by Roskomnadzor on Zello's Internet radio. She was added to the list of banned resources in April 2017, but she continued to work on the basis of the cloud service Amazon. In March 2018 Roskomnadzor was preparing to block 2 million IP-addresses of Amazon, but before that it did not come, as the service itself asked Zello not to use its power. Zello switched to the Google service and is now available through the VPN.

"For most of the year we spent less than $ 10 a day to bypass the locks. In the past few months, due to the increased diligence of Roskomnadzor, the amount has increased to about $ 70 per day, "Zello co-founder Alexei Gavrilov told Kommersant. At Telegram, the lower limit for blocking costs is $ 5,000 per day, but it can be ten times higher, he estimates. For the Roskomnadzor itself, the pursuit of Telegram is worthless, the agency says: "Roskomnadzor does not bear any additional financial costs when taking measures to restrict access to Telegram."