Social media sites stay inaccessible as govt fears ‘exploitation’

Social media sites stay inaccessible as govt fears 'exploitation' - Tech -  DAWN.COM

ISLAMABAD: While mobile data services were restored late on Friday night, access to key social media platforms remained restricted a day later, as the interior ministry is yet to allow access to those platforms.

As violent protests broke out following the arrest of PTI Chairman Imran Khan, the government pulled the plug on mobile internet on May 9 and blocked Twitter, Facebook and YouTube where videos of vandalism were being shared.

Four days later on Friday, and after severe pressure from several quarters to restore the internet and social media sites, the interior ministry ordered the Pakistan Telecommunication Auth­o­rity (PTA) to lift the restrictions.

The mobile internet services resumed at around 10pm, but Twitter and other social media websites remained inaccessible even on Saturday.

According to the telecommunication authority officials, the restriction on Twitter was never lifted as the ministry had directed the regulator to not open the platform.

A senior information ministry official, on the condition of anonymity, said the government feared that the social media platform “will be used for political mileage by the opposition”.