Our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy have changed.

By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.

Iran to suspend Google's Gmail - report

By David Goldman, staff writer


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- The government of Iran announced on Wednesday it would suspend Google's e-mail service as it prepares to unveil a national e-mail service for Iranians, according to a news report.

The Wall Street Journal reported that the Iranian telecommunications agency will soon debut its new e-mail service, which Iranian officials hope will help develop national technologies and foster a certain level of trust between the government and its citizens.

The newspaper's journalist who reported the story said the announcement was first reported on the Web site of the Iranian Labour News Agency -- aligned with former President Mohammad Hashemi Rafsanjani, a reformist -- but the material has since been pulled off the site. CNN was not able to immediately confirm either report.

"We have heard from users in Iran that they are having trouble accessing Gmail," a Google spokesman said. "We can confirm a sharp drop in traffic, and we have looked at our own networks and found that they are working properly."

"Whenever we encounter blocks in our services we try to resolve them as quickly as possibly because we strongly believe that people everywhere should have the ability to communicate freely online," the spokesman added. "Sadly, sometimes it is not within our control."

Iranians have reported Gmail services being down for several days: A Google (GOOG, Fortune 500) help forum on Gmail in Iran was filled with complaints about a loss of Gmail service in Iran dating back to Feb. 3.

It appeared, however, that Yahoo and other e-mail services were still working late Wednesday. Accustomed to such blocks, Iranians have become savvy about alternative links allowing them to get around government filters so they can communicate via e-mail.

Thousands of Iranian citizens have been taking to the streets in protest of the government since the recent elections, and clashes between authorities and protesters have been a near-daily occurrence.

-- CNN Wires contributed to this report To top of page

Index Last Change % Change
Dow 16,643.01 -11.76 -0.07%
Nasdaq 4,828.33 15.62 0.32%
S&P 500 1,988.87 1.21 0.06%
Treasuries 2.19 0.02 0.83%
Data as of 7:18pm ET
Company Price Change % Change
Freeport-McMoRan Inc... 10.50 0.31 3.04%
Bank of America Corp... 16.36 -0.08 -0.49%
Apple Inc 113.29 0.37 0.33%
Intel Corp 28.42 0.70 2.53%
Alcoa Inc 9.41 0.55 6.21%
Data as of Aug 28
Sponsors

Sections

Efforts to unionize low-wage employees of fast-food franchisees and outside contractors get lift from decision of NLRB. More

The U.S. economy has performed well this year. But there's lots of global gloom. Which will influence the Fed the most? More

You can continue to keep your two-year contract on Verizon, but the no-contract plans will save you money. More

How do you run a successful crowdfunding campaign? Indiegogo's CEO Slava Rubin offers his top tips and mistakes to avoid. More

Looking for something good on Netflix? These entertaining films will help you learn more about finance and investing. More