Iran restricts internet until calm is restored amid Anti-Hijab protests over Mahsa Amini’s death

Iranian authorities on Saturday, announced to restrict internet access in the country over intensified protests after the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who died in police custody after her arrest for allegedly failing to comply with Iran’s strict rules on women’s dress by wearing an “improper hijab”. The internet monitoring agency Netblocks said Friday that Iranians are facing a third wave of “nation-scale” loss of mobile internet connectivity as the protests continue, reported CNN. The watchdog group said earlier in the week that Iran was experiencing the most severe internet restrictions since 2019, with mobile networks largely shut down and social networks Instagram and WhatsApp restricted in the country since protests began.

Iranians both inside the country and in the diaspora are turning to popular Virtual Private Network (VPN) providers such as Tor Project and Hula VPN, the top downloaded apps available in Iran via Google Play Store to circumvent internet blocks, according to monitoring service AppBrain. However, Netblocks has warned that the kind of internet disruption seen currently in the country “cannot generally be worked around with the use of circumvention software or VPNs,” reported CNN.