Signal messenger application traffic has been blocked by Iran. Signal asks users around the world to set up proxy servers.



Be decentralized when in doubt

The open source messaging app Signal today encouraged privacy advocates to run proxy servers to overcome censorship in Iran.

Signal has recently been at odds with Iranian officials for what it represents: it’s an encrypted communication tool for sending messages that the government can’t access. Wanting to limit access to platforms frequented by protesters, the Iranian government blocks most major social media platforms except Instagram and its messaging rival WhatsApp.

However, after WhatsApp changed its privacy policy to allow users’ personal information to be shared with the parent company Facebook, privacy-conscious users switched to Signal. As popularity increased, Signal users in Iran started having problems logging in, Al Jazeera reports. According to Signal, the Middle East country was “blocking all Signal traffic in the country.”


Now, it has reached a temporary solution: proxy servers from all over the world.

Updated Signal Android beta to support TLS proxies that redirect traffic back to Signal. TLS (short for Transport Layer Security) proxies are often used to protect against denial of service attacks.

The mobile application provided instructions on how Android users can set up their own TLS proxy that allows Iranians to “reconnect” to Signal.

“While it’s easy to launch new proxy servers if blocked, we want to do everything we can to make things as difficult as possible for Iranian censors,” Signal wrote in a blog post today.


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