Internet Services Suspended, Pakistan Ranks Third Worldwide: Report

KARACHI: According to a report by virtual private network company Surfshark. Pakistan has ranked 3rd in the world in terms of enforcement of internet restrictions in the first half of 2023.

According to a report by Surfshark. a virtual private network company based in Lithuania. A one and a half year analysis of Internet shutdowns based on the Internet Shutdown Tracker showed that Pakistan was responsible for three out of 42 new restrictions worldwide, as of May 9. was imposed after the arrest of former Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Access to Twitter Facebook, Instagram and YouTube was banned in the country at the time. While several temporary cellular network outages were also seen across the country for days afterwards.

Internet Services Suspended Pakistan Ranks Third Worldwide: Report

According to the Surfshark report:

  •  Iran
  •  India
  • Pakistan

were the top three countries with new internet restrictions for the first half of 2023. It is hardly surprising that Asia has long been the epicenter of internet shutdowns, with these countries ranking second first and fourth respectively in terms of the number of restrictions globally as of 2015.

Iran had the most internet outages in the first half of 2023, with 14. All this happened in Zahedan on Friday during the protests over the massacre of Zahedan.

India ranks second with 9 record cases of internet bans. Most of these restrictions came during protests.

Pakistan ranks third in internet disruptions with 3 record cases in the first half of 2023. It started after the arrest of former Prime Minister Imran Khan.

Facebook faces severe restrictions in the first half of 2023, says report on media services affected The app was restricted in Ethiopia, Guinea, Senegal, Pakistan and Suriname. All of these countries have a history of government-imposed internet restrictions.

Telegram, Instagram and YouTube tied for second place on the list of the most blocked social platforms, each facing restrictions in four countries. WhatsApp and Twitter were close behind and ranked third on the list, each facing restrictions in three countries. While TikTok was only restricted by one country in the first half of the year, Ethiopia. However, the US is on track to become the eighth country to ban the platform.

According to the report, the first half of 2023 saw a 31 percent drop in new cases of internet disruption compared to the same period in 2022, but the number of countries imposing these restrictions increased from 13 to 14.

Google announced to bring an alternative program to Chat GPT.

Overall, Asia leads the world for internet disruptions, accounting for 71 percent of new global cases. Surfshark says an estimated 2.35 billion people experienced internet censorship throughout the year.

The report also said that the decline in global sanctions came mainly from a decline in cases in Jammu and Kashmir, which fell from 35 in the first half of 2022 to just 2 in the same period in 2023.