Iran is planning on extending their intranet nationally to the entire population. This is a network separated from the Internet, with the country having decided to block access to Google and Gmail.
Using the alibi that these measures are being taken in the name of cyber security, Iran has decided to connect their various government departments together via a national information network.
For the Iranian government, the development of their own network has become necessary to assure the security of their systems and information.
In 2010, Iran’s nuclear program was derailed by the Stuxnet worm which attacked the Siemens industrial systems in a Uranium enrichment facility. Iran accused the United States and Israel of deploying the malware as an attack against them.
But Iran’s national computer network goes even further. By March 2013, it is planned that this intranet will be available to all habitants, with the threat then being that Internet access to the world may be cut. Initially, the national and international networks would co-exist.
This plan was released at the same time that it was announced on the State owned television station that access to the Google search engine and their Gmail service would be blocked. This decision has been taken following the broadcasting of the anti-Islam film "Innocence of Muslims" on YouTube.
Reporters Sans Frontiers claims that this is the launch of their "Halal Internet", with concerns about this being raised: "As well aiming to satisfy the security concerns cited by the authorities, it also aims to step up control of online information and surveillance of netizens, especially government opponents and human rights defenders."