Iran no longer has access to the Google search engine, or the Gmail email system, with no explanation by officials as to if or when they will be reinstated and what the reason for their filtering was. The announcement for the digital blockade was made by an official named Khoramabadi – with no first name or title given.
“Google and Gmail will be filtered throughout the country until further notice,” was the official announcement.
Some groups have been speculating as to the reason for the block, with the Iranian Students’ News Agency suggesting it could be because of the anti Islamic film that appeared a couple of weeks ago and sparked outrage across many middle-eastern nations. Others have suggested it is merely a tightening of controls originally used to block Youtube and Facebook in the wake of anti-government protests in 2009.
Of course in 2012, such blocks are easily circumvented with the use of VPNs, proxys and DNS tweaks, but for the average internet user in Iran, the world just got a little less easier to search.
Apparently one of the big aims of the country’s officials is to eventually create an internal internet only for Iranians, which will feature only government sanctioned information. The first steps of such a plan are already in the works: “In recent days, all governmental agencies and offices … have been connected to the national information network,” deputy communications and technology minister Ali Hakim-Javadi said (via Telegraph).
KitGuru Says: Blocks like these never seem to work, they certainly don’t in Europe – The Pirate Bay is still shockingly easy to access. While Iran doesn’t have a Pirate Party helping it out, there’s plenty of people who know how to get around these blockades. With that in mind, do you guys think there’s much hope of the authorities ever implementing an effective national internet?