Saudi lifting ban on Skype, Whatsapp calls, But do expect censorship

The Saudi government has announced it is lifting a ban on calls made through online apps but also cautioned that it will monitor and censor them. All online voice and video call services including Microsoft’s Skype, Facebook’s WhatsApp and Messenger, and Rakuten’s Viber that satisfy regulatory requirements were set to become accessible overnight.
Adel Abu Hameed, spokesman for telecoms regulator CITC, told Arabiya TV that new regulations were aimed mainly at protecting users’ personal information and blocking content that violated the kingdom’s laws. Asked if the apps could be monitored by the authorities or companies, he said: “Under no circumstances can the user use an application for video or voice calling without monitoring and censorship by the Communications and Information Technology Commission, whether the application is global or local.”


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