Web platforms blocked in Venezuela-Colombia border standoff

Disruptions affecting multiple web services including the YouTube and VIVOplay streaming platforms and Microsoft Bing have been detected by the NetBlocks internet observatory on state provider CANTV (AS8048), starting 14:40 PM UTC Saturday 23 February 2019, 10:40 PM Venezuela time. The disruptions have come in place as National Assembly leader Juan Guaidó arrives at the Tienditas Bridge with president Iván Duque of Colombia.

A timeline of disruptions
Update – 21:45 PM: The disruption of YouTube, Bing and Google services occurred for a fourth time during the joint press conference by Juan Guaidó and the presidents of Colombia and Chile.

Update – 12:45 AM: The disruption of YouTube, Bing, Google services and also Presicope occurred from 12:45 AM UTC (8:45 PM VET) to 01:17 AM UTC (9:17 PM VET) during the joint press during the joint press conference by Juan Guaidó and the president of Colombia at the Tienditas Bridge.

Update – Sunday 24 8:36 PM: Further streaming platform disruptions observed as Guaidó arrives in Bogotá for Lima group meeting:

Update – Monday 25 5:00 PM: Streaming platform disruptions are again in effect as the Lima group meeting takes place, lasting from 4:40PM to 5:55PM UTC.

Update: Same restriction as above in place again from 7:50 PM UTC as meetings continue.

Developments from the border are being live-streamed from both countries, as Venezuelans and many international countries have sought to break a blockade imposed by incumbent president Maduro to prevent aid and supplies from entering Venezuela.

Similar disruptions were observed yesterday during the airing of a prominent humanitarian aid concert, and the new outages follow patterns of website blocking associated with ephemeral censorship in Venezuela through recent weeks.


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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