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South African ISP, Web hosts hit by DDOS attacks

Liquid Telecom, an internet service provider (ISP) in South Africa has been hit by a new wave of DDOS attacks. Other South African companies affected by the attacks include web hosting companies Afrihost Axxess and WebAfrica.

Mybroadband reports that all 4 internet based services alerted their subscribers at various times following the attacks.

Activist CEO Gian Visser says while the attacks which began on Sunday continues, the severity of the attacks have reduced.

He stated that locally hosted content like Netflix, YouTube and Gmail will have little or no service interaction while foreign hosted services will experience the most disruptions.

Read more on https://www.google.com/amp/s/mybroadband.co.za/news/security/324959-massive-ddos-attack-hit-afrihost-axxess-and-webafrica-subscribers.html/amp

Whofast.net is the new alternative to fast.com

Looking for an alternative to fast.com? Whofast.net is the new alternative to fast.com.

Just like fast.com, whofast.net is an internet speed test tool. However, whofast offers the user more relevant information about their internet and mobile networks that it’s older alternative.

While fast.com doesn’t require a user to enter in their location, on whofast.net, when a user takes an internet speed test on the platform, the user enters their location and the server now provides the user more information than just their internet speed.

Users of whofast.net get to see the performance of their mobile network in their area and the other top internet service providers and mobile networks in their location of interest.

The result is crowdsourced that means when you take a speed test on whofast.net, you are also helping to provide more accurate results to other users in your area.

Screenshot of whofast.net showing top mobile networks in Lagos, Nigeria

Imagine you are traveling from one part of your country to another country and you would like to stay connected on the internet but do not know what mobile network hast fast internet in the new location you are traveling to, all you will need to do is visit http://whofast.net and enter the location you are going. It will give you a result of the top internet networks in that area and their corresponding speed. This way you’re informed ahead and know the network to subscribe to once you land in your new location. How cool? Check the fastest internet/mobile network in your area today. Click this link 👉 http://Whofast.net

N.B: Whofast.net is not just an alternative to fast.com but also an alternative to speedtest.net.

It is the first internet speed test tool launched in Africa for the African market with plans to expand to the US, Europe and Asian markets in the nearest future.

Meet the Team

1. Folarin Omotoriogun, Founder, Head of Engineering

Folarin Omotoriogun designed and built Whofast.Net, he is responsible for engineering and strategy.

Connect with Folarin on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/folarinomotoriogun 

2. Olumuyiwa George, Head Marketing & Growth

Olumuyiwa George is responsible for marketing & growth at Whofast.Net.

You can connect with Muyiwa on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/olumuyiwa-george-a84250b1

3. Join this list

Email your CV to playdataafrica@gmail.com

How WhoFast.net Works

Internet distribution in Africa is not uniform. Mobile users continue to report conflicting stories around, how good or bad internet connectivity is for them. Furthermore, there is a general distrust for trying out new service providers. The last mile of sending the internet to a customer is a major challenge facing ISPs (Internet Service Providers), who wish to provide their customers universal access across different locations.

Personally, I have changed service providers at least four times in search for a better alternative. This is a painful process that leads to wasted funds, and in order to avoid such trial and error, I thought it would be super cool to build a service that allows people including myself know locations where network providers were performing best and worst. I imagined this service could help people make informed financial decisions around which network to subscribe to as students, workers, or travellers going to any particular destination.

Goals

The biggest challenge in building whofast.net was figuring out the most efficient way to aggregate internet speeds across multiple network providers in different locations.

It would be unsustainable to single-handedly subscribe to multiple ISPs as this would limit the number of locations that can be covered due to cost of purchasing and placing modems, and SIM cards across Africa.

Then crowdsourcing came to the rescue.

The idea was to provide a compelling speed test service that allowed people quickly check (under 10 seconds) their internet connection, in-turn they get to see the results of other people who tested their internet across different networks and locations.

Design

To provide this service, a user visits whofast.net website, enters their location, and starts a speed test session. Once the user completes their test, whofast.net shows them real-time results from other users who tested within a 6 kilometre radius of their reported location.

Architecture

Can I trust the speed test results?

Users considering switching to whofast.net typically compare the results from other speed test sites to whofast.net. From an algorithmic stand point, your browser downloads small chunks of an infinitely large data file, and the site records how much data was downloaded in a period of time to estimate internet speed in Megabytes per second.

A comparison with a popular speed test site

The variance in speed test results can be much higher depending on whether your ISP has routers closer to any given speed test server. For example, testing your internet against a server located in your country, could provide much higher results than testing against a more remote server.

Why does fast.com generally report higher download speeds?

Fast.com uses Netflix’s broad CDN (Content Distribution Network) to power its speed tests. The price you pay for this is that you can only measure, how good your experience will be on Netflix, and not necessarily your experience on other internet apps who do not have the same content distribution ubiquity as Netflix.

Whofast.net uses multiple servers in Europe to provide a fair estimation of internet speed across multiple websites.

Features

  1. Test your internet speed to know if your network provider is delivering on its promise.
  2. Find out how your internet compares to other networks in your area.
  3. Virtually travel to other destinations with your mobile network without leaving the comfort of your home, to see internet speed results in places you care about.
  4. Screenshot and share your speed test result directly with your internet provider on Twitter to praise or lodge a complaint.

Interesting facts discovered in 30 days

  1. Some networks performed best in remote areas than in cities.
  2. Over 6,000 measurements were recorded in 1 month, soon to be more.
  3. Within 7 days whofast.net covered over 143 networks, across several African countries such as Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, and many others.
  4. Internet speeds by country can be viewed here at the WhoFast Africa Fact Sheet

Whofast.net is part of the broader Play Data Africa initiative who’s mission is to build communities and technologies that help people navigate Africa more efficiently.

Save your data when watching YouTube

Apps such as Youtube intelligently sense your internet speed to determine the quality of videos to serve your mobile device. The faster your internet connection, the higher the quality of video delivered to your phone. However, while you enjoy higher quality, this attracts higher data consumptions by YouTube website and App. If you notice you are consuming data than usual, this may be the root cause. To fix this follow the below steps:

  1. Visit the YouTube video as you normally do.
  2. Once the video is loaded, select the cog icon to reveal the video option as seen here

3. Reduce the quality to a value you are comfortable with as seen below (we found out that 240p is actually a decent quality for even a desktop screen).

4. You can save up 50% data consumption by doing this. 
Test your internet at whofast.net to know the fastest network in your area.

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