The Iranian government has blocked Gmail and Google until further notice. In an announcement, that included sending a notice to citizens via text message, government officials stated that the services would be filtered, and indeed it appears that, while Google is accessible, it doesn’t actually work for searching purposes.
While many believe that this is a direct reaction to an anti-Muslim movie that has been the fuel to global fatal riots, others are saying that this is blanket censorship over one single video. But this is in line with Iran’s actions, with Tehran having just done the same thing in March before parliamentary elections. This is not surprising coming from a country whose information ministry openly brags that they block access to hundreds of thousands of websites.
While other countries, such as the UK, block access to sites that depict child abuse or child porn, Iran consistently blocks much broader categories of, such as this latest instance. In fact, this incident comes on the heels of Iran announcing that they are going to create their own internal intranet, which would be accessible by those within Iran, but where Iranian citizens could not access the Internet outside of Iran.
There are two phases to the eventual switch to Iran’s domestic Internet, with phase one having already been completed. Phase one consisted of relegating government operations strictly to their own Iranian network, and phase two will be moving the rest of its citizens over to the country network.
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