What it looks like when the Internet suddenly disappears, in 4 charts

Early one afternoon in November, Internet activity in Bangladesh fell off a cliff.The drop — to 5 percent of typical activity — lasted only an hour, but traffic would not return to normal levels for weeks. The cause? A reportedly government-ordered shutdown in the wake of a court ruling upholding a death penalty verdict in a high-profile war crimes trial.The brief interruption was just one recent example of a common problem: Internet disruptions around the world caused by myriad events. Sometimes natural disasters are to blame. Sometimes it’s power outages or other technical failures. Sometime the cables that connect the world get cut (on purpose or by accident). And, sometimes, as with Bangladesh, the government just prefers the darkness.

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