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Sudan, Ethiopia lead Africa with highest number of internet shutdowns

By , ITWeb’s Zambian correspondent.
Ethiopia , Sudan , 26 Apr 2023

Cybersecurity firm Surfshark has ranked Sudan and Ethiopia leading countries in Africa with the highest number of internet disruptions.

According the company’s latest internet shutdown tracker report, Sudan and Ethiopia lead the list, both countries had 12 internet disruptions each.

The report examines partial and total shutdowns across the world and highlights the impact of every major internet blackout or shutdown.

In the case of Sudan, the report comes at a time the country is experiencing massive internet blackout due to the on-going fight between the military and paramilitary forces.

The report says the most cause of internet shutdowns in Sudan is protests, which have sparked nine shutdowns since 2015.

Three other cases, including the current one, the company says were due to political turmoil.

Surfshark spokesperson Gabriele Racaityte-Krasauske notes lack of internet connectivity can have far reaching consequences.

“The perilous and life threatening military situation in Sudan is compounded by the absence of internet access and Sudan has already experienced a troubling number of similar restrictions since 2015. 

"Lack of internet connectivity can have far reaching and potentially devastating consequences on ordinary citizens who cannot communicate with loved ones or report the situation to the outside world. This leaves them isolated and vulnerable in a time of crisis,” says Krasauske.

This, as Africa is already losing billions of dollars as result of Internet shutdowns. In 2019 alone, Sub-Saharan Africa lost more than $2 billion in economic value as a result of deliberate governments’ action to shut down Internet.

Globally, more than 18,000 hours of Internet shutdowns around the world cost more than $8 billion in the same year, according internet research firm Top10VPN.

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