Turkey’s President Erdogan and the ruling AKP party are increasingly bent on silencing online dissent, and that now affects you even if you’re smart enough to evade typical censorship methods. Watchdog group Turkey Blocks has confirmed that Turkey is blocking the Tor anonymity network’s direct access mode for most users. You can still use a bridge mode for now, but there are hints that internet providers might be hurting performance even then. The restrictions come alongside a recent government ban on virtual private network services.
While this doesn’t completely shut off anonymity, it marks the start of a disconcerting chapter in the Erdogan regime’s bid to hold on to power. Previously, it was focused on blocking publicly available social networks whenever there are signs of unrest, making it harder for opposition movements to solidify and organize protests. Now, however, it’s instituting more permanent restrictions that make it harder to both coordinate activity in private and get access to uncensored news. Unless you resort to a Tor bridge, you might have to accept that the Turkish government can see what you’re doing when you’re using a domestic internet connection.