Computer security experts say Egypt’s crackdown on internet and mobile service is unprecedented, and the country’s authorities are being severely criticized for it. Egypt began the crackdown on Thursday night due to deadly protest against Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak.
“In 24 hours we have lost 97 percent of Egyptian internet traffic” Said Julien Coulen, one of the founders of French internet performance company Cedexis, which monitors and manages internet traffic. Rik Ferguson with Trend Micro said the internet blackout in Egypt is a “first in the history of the internet”. World leaders, rights groups, and social networking websites slammed Egypt’s move to prevent activists from organizing rallies by shutting down internet and cell phone services.
James Cowie of US internet monitoring company Renysis said the Noor Group was the one exception to the internet crackdown and this provider still has 83 live routes to its Egyptian customers. The reason the Noor Group was not affected is not known, he said, but “we observe that the Egyptian stock Exchange (www. Egyptse.com) is still alive at the Noor address.”
Experts say Egypt’s crackdown of internet and mobile service is the biggest and most wide ranging electronic blackout ever implemented by a government.