The popular messaging service WhatsApp is not available to thousands of people in Asia, Europe and South America. Down Detector reported an increase in users reporting problems with the app on Sunday morning, January 19.
About two-thirds of the reported problems with WhatsApp were due to the fact that they could not send or receive messages, while around one-third of users reported problems with the app reported connectivity problems. Only about one percent had problems registering with the messaging service. The highest concentration of problems was reported in Europe, with a significant number of users experiencing service interruptions in Asia and South America.
At the time of reporting, WhatsApp had not publicly recognized the failures. Over 500 million people worldwide use the Facebook app every day. The downtimes on Sunday are the last failures that affect the app. A serious incident occurred in March of last year, with users unavailable for almost a full day.
WhatsApp was the most impacted internet shutdown platform in 2019, according to a Top10VPN study. The app had 6,236 hours of interruption last year. In 2019, Burma (4,880), Chad (4,728) and parts of India at risk of unrest (4,196) were the countries with the highest number of Internet shutdowns.
“When we analyzed every internet shutdown in 2019, some general trends emerged,” the report says. “They are most likely to respond to protests or riots, particularly those related to elections, as authoritarian regimes want to restrict the flow of information and keep power under control.”
It was estimated that intentional internet shutdowns cost the global economy around $ 8 billion last year. Samuel Woodhams, a digital rights expert and co-author of the report, told The Independent that WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption makes it a platform of choice for people trying to keep information confidential in turbulent times, such as protests the regime.
“The shutdown makes it almost impossible for people to communicate in these situations, which makes it easier for the authorities to keep control of the power,” Woodham told the British publication.
“It is terrifyingly easy for authoritarian governments to shut down platforms like WhatsApp or even Internet access as a whole,” he said, adding that companies “are dependent on state licenses and are therefore forced to meet regulatory requirements to continue operating in this.” Area to be active country. “