RFL/RE – Iran’s official news agency reports the country has launched the first phase of its National Network of Data, an attempt by Tehran to create its own Intranet.
The new network aims to promote online Islamic content and encourage less dependency on the worldwide Internet, IRNA reported on August 28.
The National Network of Data would aim to also provide safer data transfer and offer better protection against cyberattacks.
IRNA said the second portion of the decade-old project will go online in February and the entire network is to be finished by August 2017.
Some critics have argued the network will be used by the government to restrict and control what people will be able to access online.
Earlier this month, Iranian officials targeted hundreds of social-media users following a May crackdown on women who were using Instagram for modeling.
Many Internet users in Iran use proxy sites and other methods to access banned websites and to use Twitter and Facebook.