"What to do if the Internet gets turned off in South Africa?”
Some methods may be restricted by harsh filtering. For example, the Great Firewall of China is now interfering with outgoing Virtual Private Network (VPN) connections, although VPNs were left alone for years.
Communication is vital and we all saw how easy the Internet was shut down in Zimbabwe this year and previously in Egypt.
Older and simpler tools, like dial-up Internet or even Ham Radio, could still work, since these "abandoned" tech avenues aren't being policed nearly as hard.
Using Ham Radio, the signals are rarely tracked and extremely hard to shut down or block and is our best recommendation.
BUT how does one get around the total shutdown of all of the Internet Service Provider. (ISP)
1- Simplest Solution: Use a Virtual Private Network (VPN)
Connect to a virtual private network and all traffic coming from your computer will be redirected over that VPN. In other words, if you’re connected to a VPN located in Iceland, all your network traffic will be redirected to Iceland before it emerges. Replies will be send to the server in Iceland, which will forward them back to you. This all happens over an encrypted connection. All your ISP, network operator, or even your country’s government can see is that you’re making an encrypted VPN connection and sending data over the connection. If they want to block you, they’d have to block VPN connections.
2- Domain Name Servers (DNS)
This method is the least likely to work, but it’s worth covering here. Some Internet service providers have implemented filtering by changing their DNS servers to redirect requests for the blocked websites to another website. Some places that filter their Internet connections may use something like the web filtering solution offered by OpenDNS.
Assuming the filtering is just at the DNS level and requests to other DNS servers aren’t being blocked, you can get around the filtering by setting a custom DNS server on your device. This overrides and bypasses the default DNS server controlled by your Internet service provider or the organization running the network. Use something like Google Public DNS and you’ll know no DNS-level filtering is taking place.
3- You could use Satellite Internet.
Or, you can find an alternative ISP that hasn't been affected.
When Egypt shutdown their Internet to prevent protesters from organizing, they managed to leave a few ISP’s in service. One of those ISP’s was the provider to their stock exchange.
It would stand to reason that other critical organizations would maintain their connectivity. Despite their efforts, people were able to get the word out to the world of the government’s actions; partly because people on the inside of these organizations leaked the information using their access.
Blocked sites can also be accessed using a standard proxy. System-wide (or browser-wide) proxies generally function similarly to VPNs, but they’re not as reliable — for example, they only work with certain programs, not every program on your computer. If you want to pay for a service and send all your traffic over it, you’re better off with a VPN.
However, if you want to quickly access a blocked website, you can try using a web-based proxy. There are many available, including the widely known Hide My Ass.
HideMyAss! a virtual private network provider founded in 2005 in the United Kingdom and it is a subsidiary of the Czech cybersecurity company Avast since 2016. Plug a website’s address into the box on the website and you can access it via the proxy.
This won’t always work, as the proxy itself may be blocked. It’s also not the best experience, as the proxy itself will add advertisements to the page — they have to pay for their free service somehow. However, if you want to quickly access a single blocked site without installing anything or changing any system settings, this may work for you.
5-TOR as one example, there are many. Please search the web for a system that suits yourself.
Tor allows you to browse anonymously. It does this by routing your web browsing over and encrypted network before it emerges at an endpoint, which will likely be in an uncensored, unfiltered location. You shouldn't use Tor to access sensitive, unencrypted data, but Tor will let you access blocked websites on any connection.
Tor’s developers are fighting a long, unending battle with regimes that attempt to block it, such as Iran. Tor may work even if standard VPNs, proxies, and SSH tunnels won’t.
Note that Tor does have a big downside — it’s much, much slower than typical web browsing. It will allow you to access blocked websites, but it shouldn't be used for all your day-to-day browsing unless you’re a dissident living in Iran or China.
How Tor Browser protects your privacy and identity on-line please listen to the video attached.
2..Overview of Tor
6 - HAM Radio.
Amateur radio, also known as ham radio, is a hobby enjoyed by million’s of people worldwide. Amateur radio operators call themselves "radio hams" or simply "hams." ... But ham radio can provide communication during states of emergency.
Ham radio is a popular hobby and service that brings people, electronics and communication together. People use ham radio to talk across town, around the world, or even into space, all without the Internet or cell phones. It's fun, social, educational, and can be a lifeline during times of need. Shop around for the system that best suits your needs. You can set up a ham radio station anywhere!
Always Be Prepared
In the land of no Internet connection, the man with dial-up is king. In order to get around the total shutdown of all of the ISPs, several international ISPs are offering dial-up access to the Internet to get protesters on-line, since phone service is still operational. It's slow, but it still works--the hard part is getting the access numbers without an Internet connection to find them.
Best recommendation is to start looking now for the latest and best systems that suits your specific requirements and then also find a back-up for just in-case.
Posted by BreakTheSilenceAboutSouthAfrica
First Published 28th March,2019.
Abbreviated and re-published on 5th November, 2019.