Iran
Two girls sit in a north Tehran coffee shop and browse Facebook on October 13, 2013 in Tehran, Iran. Social media networks, such as Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube are filtered in Iran and users can only access these sites using a virtual private network otherwise known as VPN.Getty Images

Iran's telecommunications minister has confirmed that the development of a system is in the works that can identify every user who logs onto the Internet, reported AFP news on Saturday (6 December).

"Because of our efforts, in future when people want to use the internet they will be identified, and there will be no web surfer whose identity we do not know," said Mahmoud Vaezi, Iran's telecommunications minister, reported Gulf News.

Vaezi announced last month that the country would have "smart filtering" within six months that would enable the authorities to filter out offensive and criminal content from being accessed online in the Islamic Republic.

"The first phase of smart online filtering will be ready within a month, a second phase within three months and a third within six months," said Vaezi, as reported by the Isna news agency.

A special internet police unit was formed in Iran in 2011 to curb cyber crimes online and track Iranians' online activity across social networks.

Social media sites, like Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have repeatedly been banned in the Islamic Republic close to elections and during unrest.

The Iranian government was ordered by the judiciary to shut down Viber, Tango and Whatsapp in September after the messaging applications were allegedly used to insult certain Iranian officials, however they remain accessible so far.

In May, an Iranian court ordered photo-sharing social media site, Instagram, to be blocked over privacy concerns.

Over 30 million people reportedly access Internet in Iran out of its 75 million overall population.