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Home News Swiss messenger app fined under Russian anti-terror law

Swiss messenger app fined under Russian anti-terror law

Published on 25/06/2022
Written by Keystone-SDA/gw
Published from Swissinfo.ch

A Moscow court has fined the messenger service Threema €14,200 (CHF14,363) for refusing to share user data with Russian authorities under a domestic anti-terror law.

“The Russian authority Roskomnadzor apparently launched an investigation in March 2022, probably to make an example,” a Threema spokesperson told the German newspaper Welt am Sonntag. The spokesperson confirmed this information to the Keystone-SDA news agency on Saturday.

Threema was found guilty of disregarding regulations under Russia’s anti-terror law, he added. According to this law, telecommunication companies must store data such as phone calls, text messages, emails, videos and photos on their servers for up to half a year and, if requested, pass them on to the domestic intelligence agency, the Federal Security Service (FSB).

“Of course, under no circumstances will we hand over any data to Russian authorities,” Threema boss Martin Blatter is quoted as saying in Welt am Sonntag. The spokesperson argued the company is bound to follow Swiss law, which does not allow the transfer of personal data to third countries – and certainly not to belligerent ones, he added.

Blatter said his company had no intention of paying the fine.

Threema is a competitor of the Russian messenger service Telegram and the American app WhatsApp.