PornHub russia porn ban block
Russia has been criticised for its censorship of sites like PornHub, Reddit and Wikipedia in recent months. Here a Moscow worker is seen near antennas on the roof of a building near the KremlinReuters

Russia's communications watchdog Roskomnadzor has blocked access to PornHub and 10 other adult websites in the country. The ban on the porn site follows a ruling from a Krasnodar court that it violates laws that protect children from "harmful information".

The watchdog released a list of 136 other adult sites earlier in 2015 that it planned to block, which included the Russian version of xHamster. At the time, PornHub did not feature on the list of banned sites. It is one of the most popular porn sites in the world, currently listed as the 63rd most-visited site by Alexa. Only Xvideos features above it in the online analytic firm's web rankings.

It is not clear what specific content triggered the ban, however a statement issued by Roskomnadzor on 7 September cited offences contained within article 242 of the Russian Federation's Criminal Code. This covers "illegal distribution of pornographic materials or objects" and "making and circulating materials or articles with pornographic images of minors".

The punishment for distributing illegal pornographic content online, according to the watchdog, is up to six years in prison. PornHub had not responded to a request for comment on the matter from IBTimes UK at the time of publication.

The ban follows a list of other popular websites blocked by Roskomnadzor in recent months. Wikipedia was briefly banned in August for an entry about charas, a hashish form of cannabis, while Reddit was blocked over a 2013 post that detailed the best way to grow a certain form of psychedelic mushrooms.