Evidence of regional internet blackouts across Venezuela

The NetBlocks internet observatory has identified total internet outages across Venezuela, affecting much of the southwest and east of the country. The outages, which began at 5:30PM UTC 26 January 2019 have lasted 28 hours, with access only now returning for most users.

NetBlocks diffscans, which map the entire IP address space of a country in real time, show the progression of the blackouts across different regions of Venezuela:

The measurements corroborate reports emerging of internet users’ difficulty contacting friends and family in the country, as well as direct reports from citizens whose connections have been momentarily restored.

The total outages follow a a series of partial restrictions and service outages affecting Wikipediasocial media and popular online platforms in recent days. The disruptions mark an intensification of internet disruptions during a period of political turmoil over the disputed presidency.

Update:

Platform disruptions affecting Periscope, YouTube, Instagram and Facebook have been detected on state provider CANTV (AS8048) during a politically significant live-streamed speech by Juan Guaidó, 27 January 9:02PM local time, with interruptions lasting 12 minutes. The disruptions, which did not affect other providers or platforms tested during the same period, are likely to have impacted audience reach and viewership figures:

Previously:

 


Methodology

NetBlocks diffscans, which map the IP address space of a country in real time, show internet connectivity levels and corresponding outages. 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.

Internet performance and service reachability are determined via NetBlocks web probe privacy-preserving analytics. Each measurement consists of latency round trip time, outage type and autonomous system number aggregated in real-time to assess service availability and latency in a given country. Network providers and locations enumerated as vantage point pairs. The root cause of a service outage may be additionally corroborated by means of traffic analysis and manual testing as detailed in the report.


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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