When Myanmar’s army generals staged a coup last week, they cut off internet access for a brief period in an apparent attempt to disrupt the protests.
Residents in Uganda were unable to use Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms for weeks after the last election.
The internet was disrupted for several months in the northern Tigray region of Ethiopia amid a wider conflict.
Shutting down the internet around the world has become an increasingly common tactic of oppressive, authoritarian regimes and some illiberal democracies.
Digital rights groups say: Governments are using this tactic to stifle dissent, silence voices of dissent, or cover up human rights violations, raising concerns about restricting freedom of expression.
The researchers say: The systems often cut off access to the Internet in response to protests or civil unrest, especially around elections, as they try to control power by restricting the flow of information.
This is the digital equivalent of controlling a local TV and radio station that was part of the previous game’s rules before the internet for dictators and rebels.
In the past year there were 93 major internet shutdowns in 21 countries, according to To report Produced by Top10VPN, a UK-based digital privacy and security research group.
The list does not include places, such as: China and North Korea, where the government tightly controls or restricts the Internet.
The report said: The shutdowns could range from a complete internet outage to blocking social media platforms or severely restricting internet speeds.
Experts have warned that the internet shutdown has political, economic and humanitarian costs, and the shutdowns highlight a wider battle for internet control.
Internet access was cut off in Myanmar for 24 hours at the end of last week, apparently in an attempt to stave off protests against the military’s takeover.
And by Sunday afternoon, netizens reported that they had suddenly regained access to data on their cell phones.
The Norwegian company Telenor, which runs one of Myanmar’s main wireless telecommunications companies, said: The Communications Ministry had indicated the circulation of fake news, the nation’s stability and the public’s interest in ordering operators to temporarily shut down networks.
Telenor explained that it must comply with local laws, adding: We deeply regret the impact of the lockdown on people in Myanmar.
The Myanmar government has implemented one of the longest internet shutdowns in the world in Rakhine and Chin states, with the cutoff beginning in June 2019 and only being lifted on February 3, 2021.
There is another long-running internet shutdown in the Tigray region of Ethiopia, where service stopped in early November, with no sign of service returning anytime soon.
The restrictions on social media in Uganda came into effect ahead of the presidential elections on January 14, along with a complete blackout on the eve of the polls, and restrictions were lifted on Wednesday.
The Internet was cut off in Belarus for 61 hours after the presidential election on August 9, marking the first internet outage in Europe.
Access remained unstable for months in Belarus, particularly around the weekend protests, when mobile internet service was repeatedly disrupted.
Internet shutdowns are also common in India, where the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is increasingly using them to target his political opposition.Ordered His Hindu nationalist government has hundreds of regional closures.