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article image92% of Internet disappears in Syria

By Brian LaSorsa     Nov 29, 2012 in Technology
The Internet effectively went black in Syria Thursday morning as 92 percent of the country’s servers were disconnected. Is President Bashar al-Assad is planning to do the unthinkable?
Research firm Renesys recorded the massive outage at about 5:30 a.m. (EST), noting that all 77 effected networks reached the Internet through one portal: the Syrian Telecommunications Establishment, a telecommunications company associated with the Syrian government.
No information can get into the country, and, worst of all, no information can get out.
A similar blackout occurred in Egypt in January 2011 as protests against the Mubarak regime heated up. The escalation, many say, prompted the Egyptian government to eliminate Internet- and SMS-based communications, ultimately forcing reporters to deliver updates via land lines.
It follows, then, that this most recent blackout may very well be Assad’s first step in a new crack-down against protesters. A successful push-back by the international community, like we saw in August when hacktivist group Anonymous seized control of the Syrian Ministry of Defense website, could make the regime look weak.
A self-disconnect, frankly, is a better public relations move.
You can follow updates on Twitter with the hashtag #SyriaBlackout.
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More about Syria, Internet, Censorship, Technology, Bashar alAssad
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