Saudi Arabia may ban VOIP and messaging services

Share:

enemies of internetThe Saudi telecommunication regulator’s threat to ban voice-over-IP (VOIP) internet telephony services and mobile messaging services has evoked strong reactions from citizens and expatriate residents of the country.

According to sources from local telecommunications companies, the Communications and Information Technology Commission (CITC) in the country has demanded that it be allowed to monitor encrypted applications, according to a report in English daily Arab News.

According to the report, users of mobile messaging service WhatsApp and VOIP services Viber and Skype in the kingdom face the risk of being barred from these applications if the operators of these communication platforms do not provide a monitoring server by the end of this week.

“I would be very disappointed if CITC disconnects this server; I use it every day to talk to my wife and children who live in India,” Indian schoolteacher Mohammad Akram told the Saudi daily.

“Viber is the cheapest way to reach my children. It enables me to chat with them, share pictures and send voice messages. If they ban it, I would have to go back to talking to my children once a month without seeing them until I visit them,” he added.

The paper said that Saudi students on scholarships who use Skype to contact their parents are also disappointed.

“I really don’t understand what they mean by monitoring. Are they going to tap into the conversations I have with my mother and sister? Does that mean they are going to have to wear the veil when they open the camera for me?” Khalid Tunsi, a finance student in the US, wondered while talking to the Jeddah-based English daily.

“I really don’t understand what they mean by monitoring. Are they going to tap into the conversations I have with my mother and sister? Does that mean they are going to have to wear the veil when they open the camera for me?” Khalid Tunsi, a finance student in the US, wondered while talking to the Jeddah-based English daily.

“If they cut off these applications, it will make my life really difficult because with this technology I am able to see my mother every day,” he added.

Tunsi’s mother is also concerned by this news, saying this application has brought her comfort. “No one understands what I’m going through; my only son is living a million miles away and he only receives one ticket per year from the Saudi Cultural Attaché to come home for a visit,” she said. “If they take these applications away from me, I will really be depressed.”

According to Al Arabiya news site, the Saudi telecommunication watchdog had addressed a similar case with BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (RIM) in 2010 when it ordered local telecommunication companies to suspend BlackBerry messenger services.

The site further reported that Saudi online users took to Twitter to mock the commission’s anticipated decision, with some asking for the internet service to be cut off altogether.

Gulf News

Share:

Comments

24 responses to “Saudi Arabia may ban VOIP and messaging services”

  1. 5thDrawer Avatar
    5thDrawer

    Like the Hezzys, they HATE that people can talk to each other and they can’t SPY on us.
    From now on I’m naked ALL the time …. come one, come all … if you’re looking it’s YOUR problem. 😉

    1. your analagies sometimes amaze me…let me give you a better one…these are the same pigs that let a prominent sheikh get away with raping and murdering his 5 year old daughter yet sentenced to death 21 people for stealing…maybe the pig that killed and raped his daughter recorded it and put it on his facebook account….? hows that for an analgy?

      1. 5thDrawer Avatar
        5thDrawer

        It wasn’t an ‘analogy’ … Leb-net isn’t the slowest in the world ONLY because of it’s one-scource data-line. But as for the ‘everything-about-everybody’ (Big Brother made acceptable) Facebook and Google and Wikileaker-type of people – if they can find me to watch – as I said it’s their problem, not mine.
        What some brain-fart idiot does elsewhere to his kids is neither here or there. Stopping people from enjoying the BEST of the ‘www’ is ludicrous.
        But maybe Patience2 is right … they really hate free phone-calling – with live video to boot. They can’t make an extra profit on it.
        But the whole idea of ‘www’ for PEOPLE, back when I was using a 300-baud modem and paying long distance calls to get on ‘bulletin boards’ to download 24K files over an hour, was to cut the costs involved in spreading useful information. And, it was spread anyway.
        That ‘techies’ finally figured out how to make it work with WiFi connections we actually pay for, is simply lovely. But it’s the ‘compression coding for speed’ that governments don’t like to see as it whizzes along, if they can’t read it to spy on you. Too bad, I say. Privacy is #1.
        Bust into my private zone and you may see more than a raised middle finger. :-)))

        1. with these people its not about money its simply about control…they dont want people to think….they banned blackberrys because they couldnt track them…getting side tracked now remeber the movie eagle eye? thats the world we live in now….and whats sadder is all the movies that come out now depicting the future where there always seems to be a lower class of society being ruled by an elite eg hunger games..where the elite feed off the impoverished….see how they prepare our minds???? re the hezzys at least they have female news presenters and reporters????their females cant even drive yet

          1. 5thDrawer Avatar
            5thDrawer

            Nasty had to have mothers on his side – and they can do the shopping probably.
            But yes, The house of Saud IS weirdly different. And I’m sure their OWN business-types use the damn devices all the time. Maybe it’s them they want to stop? 😉
            Or at least, to track when they come to visit Beirut drinking spots? :-))

            I had a long interest in ‘Science Fiction’ … and over the now-many years some of the ‘imagined’ (impossible) things written about have come to pass. People with imaginations keep trying to invent … and some finally do make invention work. At least, sometimes, with some satisfaction. (A lot of small inventions went into what we now hold in one hand all day and use to ‘twit’ silly things to other ‘twits’.)
            Other people ‘imagine’ despotic regimes and humankind reduced to subservient rats. In movies, Charlie Chaplin did a great early film on how workers’ are treated. Again, it’s human imagination at work – but not the ‘bright and questing’. Only the ‘dark and foreboding’. Recent popularity at movies has resurrected Vampires … imagine THAT. And some fools will think anything is possible; some will attempt to emulate them … rational people know that death is simply the end.
            When ‘Animal Farm’ was written, did anyone actually believe pigs could rule other animals? Have we yet seen the 3 ‘parts’ of a divided planet in ‘1984’, and a ‘ruler’ of one part named Big Brother? Right … and I doubt ‘we’ ever will. But the books DO highlight behaviours of some people – and their fears especially in ‘1984’. Mostly, they fear the unknown … and then begin to believe theorists like the pigs and follow because they can’t remember what was ‘before’.

            Who is ‘afraid’ now? Who is ‘ill-educated’? Who will you allow into your mind in an attempt to control it? That is where what you call ‘control’ begins after all.
            If the only thing ‘they’ can’t do is control your mind, and you feel free enough to state it even on the ‘net’, they may bomb you out of existence … of course … but they will never have the control they wish for. Many of us will work hard to not allow them that.

    2. Prophettttt Avatar
      Prophettttt

      You really earned my down arrow with this twisted comment,lol

      1. 5thDrawer Avatar
        5thDrawer

        Next recipe Prophet … Tai Fat Worms. 🙂

  2. 5thDrawer Avatar
    5thDrawer

    Like the Hezzys, they HATE that people can talk to each other and they can’t SPY on us.
    From now on I’m naked ALL the time …. come one, come all … if you’re looking it’s YOUR problem. 😉

    1. your analagies sometimes amaze me…let me give you a better one…these are the same pigs that let a prominent sheikh get away with raping and murdering his 5 year old daughter yet sentenced to death 21 people for stealing…maybe the pig that killed and raped his daughter recorded it and put it on his facebook account….? hows that for an analgy?

      1. 5thDrawer Avatar
        5thDrawer

        It wasn’t an ‘analogy’ … Leb-net isn’t the slowest in the world ONLY because of it’s one-scource data-line. But as for the ‘everything-about-everybody’ (Big Brother made acceptable) Facebook and Google and Wikileaker-type of people – if they can find me to watch – as I said it’s their problem, not mine.
        What some brain-fart idiot does elsewhere to his kids is neither here or there. Stopping people from enjoying the BEST of the ‘www’ is ludicrous.
        But maybe Patience2 is right … they really hate free phone-calling – with live video to boot. They can’t make an extra profit on it.
        But the whole idea of ‘www’ for PEOPLE, back when I was using a 300-baud modem and paying long distance calls to get on ‘bulletin boards’ to download 24K files over an hour, was to cut the costs involved in spreading useful information. And, it was spread anyway.
        That ‘techies’ finally figured out how to make it work with WiFi connections we actually pay for, is simply lovely. But it’s the ‘compression coding for speed’ that governments don’t like to see as it whizzes along, if they can’t read it to spy on you. Too bad, I say. Privacy is #1.
        Bust into my private zone and you may see more than a raised middle finger. :-)))

        1. with these people its not about money its simply about control…they dont want people to think….they banned blackberrys because they couldnt track them…getting side tracked now remeber the movie eagle eye? thats the world we live in now….and whats sadder is all the movies that come out now depicting the future where there always seems to be a lower class of society being ruled by an elite eg hunger games..where the elite feed off the impoverished….see how they prepare our minds???? re the hezzys at least they have female news presenters and reporters????their females cant even drive yet

          1. 5thDrawer Avatar
            5thDrawer

            Nasty had to have mothers on his side – and they can do the shopping probably.
            But yes, The house of Saud IS weirdly different. And I’m sure their OWN business-types use the damn devices all the time. Maybe it’s them they want to stop? 😉
            Or at least, to track when they come to visit Beirut drinking spots? :-))

            I had a long interest in ‘Science Fiction’ … and over the now-many years some of the ‘imagined’ (impossible) things written about have come to pass. People with imaginations keep trying to invent … and some finally do make invention work. At least, sometimes, with some satisfaction. (A lot of small inventions went into what we now hold in one hand all day and use to ‘twit’ silly things to other ‘twits’.)
            Other people ‘imagine’ despotic regimes and humankind reduced to subservient rats. In movies, Charlie Chaplin did a great early film on how workers’ are treated. Again, it’s human imagination at work – but not the ‘bright and questing’. Only the ‘dark and foreboding’. Recent popularity at movies has resurrected Vampires … imagine THAT. And some fools will think anything is possible; some will attempt to emulate them … rational people know that is simply the end.
            When ‘Animal Farm’ was written, did anyone actually believe pigs could rule other animals? Have we yet seen the 3 ‘parts’ of a divided planet in ‘1984’, and a ‘ruler’ of one part named Big Brother? Right … and I doubt ‘we’ ever will. But the books DO highlight behaviours of some people – and their fears especially in ‘1984’. Mostly, they fear the unknown … and then begin to believe theorists like the pigs and follow because they can’t remember what was ‘before’.

            Who is ‘afraid’ now? Who is ‘ill-educated’? Who will you allow into your mind in an attempt to control it? That is where what you call ‘control’ begins after all.
            If the only thing ‘they’ can’t do is control your mind, and you feel free enough to state it even on the ‘net’, they may bomb you out of existence … of course … but they will never have the control they wish for. Many of us will work hard to not allow them that.

    2. Prophettttt Avatar
      Prophettttt

      You really earned my down arrow with this twisted comment,lol

      1. 5thDrawer Avatar
        5thDrawer

        Next recipe Prophet … Tai Fat Worms. 🙂

  3. Reasonableman Avatar
    Reasonableman

    Internet in no matter what shape or form you use it for lacks freedom and if you read there terms and conditions you see that all conversations are tapped into and can and will be used against you. Big brother is always watching

    1. 5thDrawer Avatar
      5thDrawer

      Yup … they set up a huge storage facility for the purpose in California YEARS ago … worms and bots work effortlessly to gather sent stuff … and you can pay to have specific things you may have lost in the ‘ether’ retrieved for you. Businesses use it for that purpose too. Wikileakers seem to know pass-codes. It’s a wonderful world, that ethernet.

      1. Reasonableman Avatar
        Reasonableman

        Good depot for movie producers to get latest ideas and ofcourse for the cia and petofiles

        1. Reasonableman Avatar
          Reasonableman

          Jumped to extremw but it can happen lol

  4. Reasonableman Avatar
    Reasonableman

    Internet in no matter what shape or form you use it for lacks freedom and if you read there terms and conditions you see that all conversations are tapped into and can and will be used against you. Big brother is always watching

    1. 5thDrawer Avatar
      5thDrawer

      Yup … they set up a huge storage facility for the purpose in California YEARS ago … worms and bots work effortlessly to gather sent stuff … and you can pay to have specific things you may have lost in the ‘ether’ retrieved for you. Businesses use it for that purpose too. Wikileakers seem to know pass-codes. It’s a wonderful world, that ethernet.

      1. Reasonableman Avatar
        Reasonableman

        Good depot for movie producers to get latest ideas and ofcourse for the cia and petofiles

        1. Reasonableman Avatar
          Reasonableman

          Jumped to extremw but it can happen lol

  5. Patience2 Avatar
    Patience2

    Another problem — the profits from VOIP are not covering the shortfall in their oil revenues. 🙂

  6. Patience2 Avatar
    Patience2

    Another problem — the profits from VOIP are not covering the shortfall in their oil revenues. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *