Signal is a favorite app of dissidents and protestors worldwide, as seen in a 2017 Berkeley, Calif. protest. Photo: Elijah Nouvelag via Getty

The encrypted messaging app Signal said Tuesday it had been threatened by Amazon's cloud division after disguising Signal traffic as an Amazon site.

Why it matters: The Signal app, like most apps, used a trick called "domain fronting" to circumvent censorship measures by countries like Iran. Amazon banned domain fronting on Friday, leaving Signal and countless protesters worldwide in the lurch.

How it works: Apps running in the cloud can make it appear like their traffic comes from other servers using the same cloud infrastructure.

  • Domain fronting makes it impossible to filter out a single app from the rest of the apps and websites using the same cloud.
  • Amazon said appearing to come from an Amazon-owned domain violates Amazon Web Services' terms of service, according to Signal.

What they're saying: "The idea behind domain fronting was that to block a single site, you’d have to block the rest of the internet as well. In the end, the rest of the internet didn’t like that plan," Signal wrote in a blog post.

Amazon did not immediately respond for a request for comment.

Go deeper

Americans reflect on Independence Day amid racism reckoning

A Black Lives Matter banner and a United States flag on the facade of the U.S. embassy building in Seoul, South Korea. Photo: Simon Shin/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

America's leaders are rethinking how they view Independence Day, as the country reckons with the historic, unequal treatment of people of color during a pandemic which has disproportionately affected nonwhite Americans.

Why it matters: The country’s legacy of racism has come into sharp focus in the weeks of protests following the death of George Floyd while in Minneapolis police custody. From Confederate statues to Mount Rushmore, Americans are reexamining the symbols and traditions they elevate and the history behind them.

Updated 13 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 11,031,905 — Total deaths: 523,777 — Total recoveries — 5,834,337Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 2,788,395 — Total deaths: 129,306 — Total recoveries: 790,404 — Total tested: 34,213,497Map.
  3. States: ICU beds in Arizona's hot spot reach near capacity.
  4. Public health: The states where face coverings are mandatory Fauci says it has been a "very disturbing week" for the spread of the coronavirus in the U.S.
  5. Economy: The economy may recover just quickly enough to kill political interest in more stimulus.
15 hours ago - Sports

Washington Redskins to review team name amid public pressure

Photo: Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

The Washington Redskins have announced they will be conducting a review of the team's name after mounting pressure from the public and corporate sponsors.

Why it matters: This review is the first formal step the Redskins are taking since the debate surrounding the name first began. It comes after weeks of discussions between the team and the NFL, the team said.