In Hong Kong’s recent anti-amendment of the Fugitive Offenders Regulations, many demonstrators exchanged messages with the encrypted communication mobile program Telegram. Reuters quoted a person familiar with the news on August 30 that Telegram will update the program within a few days to allow users to close. The purpose of the telephone pairing function is to protect the identity of the demonstrators and prevent the Chinese government or Hong Kong government personnel from identifying them through the program.
According to the report, the app will automatically match the members of the group by phone number. As long as the government personnel query the telecommunications company, they can find the identity of the phone number.
The report quoted people familiar with the matter as saying that Telegram has recently discovered that there are many phone numbers that may come from the Hong Kong government or the Chinese government. They believe that there is an opportunity to identify the demonstrators, but it is not clear whether any demonstrators have been successfully identified.
Reuters inquired about the Hong Kong government and the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The report quoted the Hong Kong Security Bureau as responding that the bureau was responsibly handling the current difficult situation to restore public order, but did not respond to the question of whether to find the demonstrators through Telegram.