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‘1,157 hour of govt-ordered net outages in 2021’

These internet shutdowns impacted 59.1 million people across the country.

In India, there were as many as 45 reported shutdowns following orders by authorities at various levels. Overall, since 2012, there have been 552 internet shutdowns in the country, according to a research by SFLC.in.

Internet shutdowns, ordered by central, state and district level authorities in India, lasted a total 1,157 hours, resulting in a loss of $583 million in 2021, according to a research by internet firm top10vpn.com. These internet shutdowns impacted 59.1 million people across the country.

The total duration of domestic internet shutdowns in India was the third longest globally, behind Myanmar and Nigeria, where these blackouts were for 12,238 and 5,040 hours, respectively. The total loss caused by internet shutdowns last calendar year stood at $2.8 billion in Myanmar and $1.5 billion in Nigeria, the research by top10vpn.com showed.

Globally, government-ordered internet outages in 21 countries lasted for over 30,000 hours in total and cost the global economy $5.45 billion in 2021, a 36 per cent on-year increase in impact, the research showed. Among the major social media intermediaries, Twitter faced the most shutdowns and was blacked out for up to 12,379 hours, while Facebook faced government-ordered shutdowns for 7,709 hours globally.

In India, there were as many as 45 reported shutdowns following orders by authorities at various levels. Overall, since 2012, there have been 552 internet shutdowns in the country, according to a research by SFLC.in.

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Between 2017 and 2019, the number of preventive internet shutdowns enforced by central and state governments in India also saw a major spike, and as many as 95 of these lasted for over 24 hours. There were at least 147 instances over these three years for which no data on the duration of shutdowns is available as there is lack of any form of communication on these blockades, according to data available in public domain and research by SFLC.in.

In most such instances, there was no formal order being issued to telecom operators, according to senior industry executives.

First published on: 11-01-2022 at 00:57 IST
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