Judge Pedraz orders Telegram to be blocked as a precautionary measure following a complaint from Mediaset, Atresmedia and Movistar Plus | Technology

The judge of the National Court Santiago Pedraz has ordered the provisional suspension of the instant messaging application Telegram following a complaint filed by Mediaset, Atresmedia and Movistar Plus for alleged unauthorized use of audiovisual content subject to copyright.

As reported by Cuatro and legal sources have confirmed to Europa Press, the head of the Central Court of Instruction Number 5 has adopted this decision within the framework of a request for a precautionary measure that the audiovisual companies claimed so that the activity of the application could be paralyzed while the investigation is carried out. Given the lack of response from the instant and encrypted messaging application, launched in 2013, which has refused to provide the judge with the information requested, telecommunications operators have been ordered to temporarily block the Telegram connection. in Spain, according to the same sources consulted.

At the moment, the application remains operational, although the blocking ordered by the National Court is expected to occur in a few hours. Some users are reporting problems accessing the application tonight in Spain, according to the platform DownDetector.

Telegram is a messaging application that has become popular as an alternative to WhatsApp, especially when the Meta app was having problems. But also because the company, founded a decade ago by two Russian brothers (Nikolai and Pavel Durov), has allowed more freedom over the content that was shared or the type of activities that were carried out, which has caused conflictive groups to flourish. Messages in the app are end-to-end encrypted, so only the sender and receiver access the content.

But open groups and broadcast channels allow users to exchange messages and files of all kinds publicly. The messaging platform has been removed from stores apps or taken down judicially on previous occasions for allowing the exchange of illegal content. A few years ago, it disappeared from the Apple App Store due to a case of child pornography and Brazil suspended the service for not collaborating in an investigation against neo-Nazi groups.

The use that various illegal or extremist organizations make of this application is known: without going any further, the Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the Moscow attack this Friday on its Telegram channel. It has also had problems in the past due to the activities of far-right groups, the dissemination of violent content, drug trafficking and copyright violations, as is the case that the National Court has addressed.

In 2019, Telegram blocked several channels that distributed pirated books, newspapers and magazines after collaborating with organizations in the sector. A year later, the platform was flagged by the European Union for sharing unauthorized content for download or streaming, such as music, books, news publications, movies and television shows.

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