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Somalia blocks access to Tik Tok, Telegram over ‘moral decadence and terrorism’

GOOBJOOG NEWS|MOGADISHU: Somali government has banned the popular Chinese social media platform and the encrypted messaging service Telegram over what it termed as erosion of morality and ‘aiding terrorism.’

In a statement Sunday, the Ministry of Information and Technology directed all Internet Service Providers (ISP) to cease access to Tiktok, Telegram and the betting site 1XBET effective on August 24.

The government said terrorist groups were using the platforms adding that the social media platforms were also contributing to the erosion of morality. Groups such as Al-Shabaab and ISIS are known to use Telegram for communication owing to its privacy and encryption capabilities.

The ban on Tik Tok deals a blow to many young Somalis who are now using the service to generate income following the introduction of monetisation service by the Chinese media giant.

Despite the ban, analysts say users will still circumvent the restriction by using Virtual Protocol Networks (VPNs) which hide the location of the user thus enabling them to access restricted websites and apps.