[tor-talk] Iran Protests: OONI data confirms censorship events

Maria Xynou maria at openobservatory.org
Fri Jan 5 12:56:39 UTC 2018


OONI just published a report on the analysis of network measurements
collected from (7 networks in) Iran over the last week, confirming the
blocking of Telegram, Instagram, and Facebook Messenger.

This report is available here:

OONI data shows that Iranian ISPs started blocking access to Telegram
and Instagram on 31st December 2017 by means of DNS and TCP blocking.
Irancell (AS44244) however only started blocking access to these
services on 2nd January 2018.

Facebook Messenger was already blocked (by means of DNS tampering),
independently from the recent protests. We previously reported on the
blocking of Facebook Messenger in our last Iran report:

OONI data shows that WhatsApp is accessible in all tested networks in Iran.

Tor Metrics show a spike in Tor usage in Iran on 31st December 2017
(most likely in response to the blocking of Telegram and Instagram), but
a sudden drop thereafter, indicating an increased blocking of the Tor

OONI data corroborates Tor Metrics and suggests that Iranian ISPs
started throttling access to the Tor network on 31st December. Some ISPs
started blocking access to the Tor network on 1st January. But the Tor network appeared to be blocked in all networks
(where measurements were collected) in Iran on 2nd January 2018.

To circumvent the censorship, we recommend the use of obfs4 bridges (particularly since bridge
reachability tests show that they work). We will continue to monitor
the situation.

If you're interested in reproducing these findings in Iran, you can do
so by running OONI Probe: https://ooni.torproject.org/install/

All network measurement data is made publicly available:

All the best,


Maria Xynou
Research and Partnerships Coordinator
Open Observatory of Network Interference (OONI)
PGP Key Fingerprint: 2DC8 AFB6 CA11 B552 1081 FBDE 2131 B3BE 70CA 417E

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