Signal, one of the world’s leading encrypted messaging apps created by Open Whisper Systems, and a favorite of Edward Snowden, has now been blocked in Egypt. The company’s twitter account reported that “everything is functioning normally on our end, so something might be up on the local networks in Egypt.”
Open Whisper Systems investigated the issue with several key members of the Open Observatory of Network Interference (OONI) which carefully monitors signs of internet censorship and surveillance.
The company has suggested that the interruption of traffic is being caused by a TCP reset injection issued by a third party. The injection causes a change in the data packet TCP header, which signals endpoints in the network to stop using the TCP connection. This causes a block since packets cannot be sent using the connection’s identifying numbers.
Ahmed Gharbeia, an authority in the digital and online privacy space, explains that connections and difficulties vary from network to network. She attributes the difficulties either with an application based malfunction, or a non-centralized interference with the app directly from the state.
As of right now, Open Whisper Systems is working on a solution to the block but their temporary solution is directing users to use VPN to access Signal.
Need a quick way to bypass the Signal block in Egypt? Signal users can still use a VPN service provider like TorGuard to completely bypass this block.