LGermany has just imposed a 5 million euro fine on the Telegram messenger for his inaction in the face of the hate messages being broadcast there. Pronounced under the “NetzDG” – the German law aimed at sanctioning hateful content on social networks – this sanction might seem trivial, even minor, but it is actually of a strong symbolic load, because it does not aim at the usual large platforms – Meta [Facebook, Instagram]Twitter, TikTok and others – but encrypted messages from Telegram, on which it is time to end impunity.
Telegram, messaging formerly known as “the application of the jihadists”today widely used by politicians of all kinds, it is also a real nest of hateful, terrorist and child pornography content.
With over 500 million users worldwide, the application attracts a very diverse audience, attracted by its highly secure messaging reputation, which protects its users’ data. The perfect playground for cybercriminals banished from big platforms in the spotlight.
Everything can be said and done on Telegram, without moderation.
Here is how in the spring of 2020, in confined France, the number of “fisha” accounts., communication channels with up to 200,000 people in which intimate photos and videos of young women are disseminated, without their consent. More recently, the war in Ukraine has shown how this application can be a tool for the mass dissemination of disinformation, to the point of worrying its founder, the Russian libertarian Pavel Durov, who confirmed, in a February 27 Telegram post. , not having the possibility to verify the accuracy of the information published. Through these channels and circuits of communication, there are exchanges between Kremlin propagandists, networks of neo-Nazis, pedophiles or conspirators. Unesco recently revealed that nearly half of the Holocaust-related content on Telegram is Holocaust deniers.
Reported in 2016
No representative in France or Europe, no transparency reports, no information on its turnover, its number of employees, its participation or the location of the servers where the data is stored. An international nomadism based sometimes in Dubai, sometimes in Delaware, sometimes in the British Virgin Islands, everything is done to be accountable to anyone and to protect itself from the states, both in terms of taxation and regulation. As for the legal requisitions, they obviously remain a dead letter – which Telegram gets to claim on its website and which Francois Molins and Bernard Cazeneuve they had denounced, since 2016, when they were respectively the prosecutor of Paris and the Minister of the Interior.
You still have 40.21% of this article to read. The following is for subscribers only.