Internet being restored in Iran after week-long shutdown

Network data from the NetBlocks internet observatory confirm that connectivity has been restored with multiple fixed-line providers across much of Iran, allowing some users to get online via wifi. Current connectivity levels have risen to 64% after earlier flatlining at 5% for several days. Mobile internet remains largely unavailable.

The partial restoration has allowed a degree of information exchange following days of near-total isolation. However many regions remain offline, including parts of Tehran. Network measurements indicate that most social media remain blocked in line with long-running Iranian policy, although access is possible using VPN software.

Live Shutdown Monitor
Follow live connectivity levels and charts in real-time using the Real-time Shutdown Monitor feeds:  Iran National connectivity and Iran Mobile Connectivity

The shutdowns began on Friday, 15 November amid protests against rising fuel prices. The disruptions progressed to a total internet blackout on Saturday, cutting off Iranians from the rest of the world.

 

 

Users had started to come on line the earlier evening and on Saturday morning, as certain networks became available:

However most mobile internet users remain out of luck, as technical data show two of the three leading mobile operators remain offline as of Sunday noon:

At 5pm Sunday 24 November local time, MTN Irancell activated much of its cellular network, but users have found themselves with only limited access to  domestic platforms without connectivity to the global internet:

What was the extent of the internet shutdown?

On Friday afternoon, mobile and fixed-line outages were first identified in affected cities with Tehran, Mashhad, Shiraz and other cities showing signs of disruption. The outage was not total and the disruptions did not have national impact at the time of writing suggestive of geographic targeting.

Subsequently, the disruptions proceeded to a disconnection of all mobile networks followed by a near-total national internet blackout and partial shutdown of telephony services.

The disruption is the most severe recorded in Iran since President Rouhani came to power, and the most severe disconnection tracked by NetBlocks in any country in terms of its technical complexity and breadth.

See full shutdown report: Internet disrupted in Iran amid fuel protests in multiple cities

Breaking incident: Report will be updated as new data is processed.


Methodology

NetBlocks diffscans, which map the IP address space of a country in real time, show internet outages corresponding to connectivity disruptions. Purposeful internet outages generally have a distinct network pattern used by NetBlocks to determine and attribute the root cause of an outage, a process known as attribution which follows detection and classification stages.


NetBlocks is a civil society group working at the intersection of digital rights, cyber-security and internet governance. Independent and non-partisan, NetBlocks strives for an open and inclusive digital future for all.

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