Internet Shutdowns

Syrian Arab Republic (the)

31 May, 2021 01:00 - 22 June, 2021 07:30 (22 days)

Local Impact

The shutdown affected all Leased Lines and ADSL customers. The Ministry of Education announced the shutdown ahead of time, and state-owned operator Syrian Telecom issued a notice that Internet service will be cut from 31 May to 22 June 2021, between 04:00 to 08:30 local time (UTC+3), noting that this may be extended until 10:30.


The Syrian government has unplugged the Internet every year during student exams since 2016, after exam questions began appearing on social media. Yet there is growing evidence that shutdowns are an ineffective way to prevent cheating, as questions still get leaked in spite of an Internet blackout.


Data and Analysis

The Syrian government is continuing a tradition of shutting down Internet access during general school examinations. The shutdowns are expected to follow this schedule between 31st May and 22nd June 2021.

The timing of the shutdown is expected to reflect the time needed to distribute physical copies of exam questions to examination centers between 4:30 and 8:00 am local time, followed by mobile data shutdown for the duration of the exam.


The schedule above matches Scientific and Literary streams schedule published by the Syrian Ministry of Education:


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