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Syria cut off from global Internet as civil war rages

Google’s Transparency Report pages show traffic to Google pages from Syria suddenly stopped shortly before 3pm
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First Published: Wed, May 08 2013. 12 59 PM IST
Pro-Syrian regime activists, one holding up a poster of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, shout slogans during a march against the Israeli attacks on Syria as they rally outside the United Nations offices in the capital Sanaa, on 7 May 2013. Photo: AFP
Pro-Syrian regime activists, one holding up a poster of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, shout slogans during a march against the Israeli attacks on Syria as they rally outside the United Nations offices in the capital Sanaa, on 7 May 2013. Photo: AFP
San Francisco: Internet connections between Syria and the outside world were cut off on Tuesday, according to data from Google Inc. and other global Internet companies.
Google’s Transparency Report pages showed traffic to Google services pages from the country, embroiled in a civil war that has lasted more than two years, suddenly stopped shortly before 3pm.
The vast majority of websites within Syria were rendered unreachable as well, other experts said, as the county appeared to shut itself off.
“Effectively, the shutdown disconnects Syria from Internet communication with the rest of the world. It’s unclear whether Internet communication within Syria is still available,” wrote Dan Hubbard, chief technology officer at infrastructure services firm OpenDNS.
“Although we can’t yet comment on what caused this outage, past incidents were linked to both government-ordered shutdowns and damage to the infrastructure, which included fiber cuts and power outages.”
Hubbard wrote on an OpenDNS blog that a similar Internet blackout in Syria occurred in November and lasted three days. About 80 Internet pathways normally are listed by Syrian providers, but only three were being advertised to machines searching for connections late on Tuesday.
The Syrian ambassador could not immediately be reached for comment.
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First Published: Wed, May 08 2013. 12 59 PM IST
More Topics: Syria | Internet | Google | Civil war |
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