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Saudi Arabia to Lift Ban on Online VoIP and Video Calling Services

Accepted submission by takyon at 2017-09-20 19:51:55
Digital Liberty

Saudia Arabia will lift a 2013 ban on Internet calling services [reuters.com]:

Saudi Arabia will lift a ban on internet phone calls, a government spokesman said, part of efforts to attract more business to the country. All online voice and video call services such as Microsoft's Skype and Facebook's WhatsApp that satisfy regulatory requirements will become accessible at midnight (2100 GMT), Adel Abu Hameed, spokesman for the telecoms regulator CITC said on Twitter on Wednesday.

The policy reversal represents part of the Saudi government's broad reforms to diversify the economy partly in response to low oil prices, which have hit the country's finances. "Digital transformation is one of the key kick-starters for the Saudi economy, as it will incentivise the growth of internet-based businesses, especially in the media and entertainment industries," a statement from the information ministry said. "Access to VoIP (voice over internet protocol) will reduce operational costs and spur digital entrepreneurship – that's why it is such an important step in the Kingdom's internet regulation," it said.

Perhaps they found the backdoors.

Also at TechCrunch [techcrunch.com].


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