WhatsApp to enable messaging in internet blackouts


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Instant-messaging service WhatsApp is letting customers join via proxy servers to allow them to remain on-line if the web is blocked or disrupted by shutdowns.

The technology giant, owned by Meta, said it hoped blackouts such as these in Iran "never occur" again.

They denied human rights and "cut people off from receiving pressing help".

WhatsApp is urging its global community to volunteer proxies to assist people "communicate freely" and said it would offer guidance on how to set one up.

"Connecting via proxy maintains the identical excessive level of privateness and safety that WhatsApp provides," it blogged.

"Your private messages will nonetheless be protected by end-to-end encryption - ensuring they keep between you and the person you are speaking with and are not seen to anybody in between, not the proxy servers, WhatsApp or Meta."

Juras Juršėnas, from proxy and on-line data assortment firm Oxylabs, told BBC News: "For individuals with authorities restrictions on web access, such as was the case with Iran, utilization of a proxy server can let people retain connection to WhatsApp and the remainder of the free, uncensored internet.

"It will allow people across the world to remain connected even when their web entry is blocked by some malicious actors."


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