Feeds

Google exec 'missing' amid Egypt protests

Web giant grants voice to silenced tweeters

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Google's head of marketing for the Middle East and North Africa has gone missing after joining protests against the Egyptian government, according to report citing the exec's brother.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Wael Ghonim – who joined Google in late 2008 – has not been heard from since Friday at 6pm.

It should be noted, however, the Egyptian government has restricted internet and cell phone access within the country.

Ghonim attended Cairo University and the American University in Cairo, according to his LinkedIn page. And at Google, the page says, he was charged with "driving the growth of Google B2C/B2B products across MENA" and "evangelizing the Internet in the region, and help growing the Arabic content".

Earlier this month, Ghonim tweeted that he was traveled to Qatar for an "internet freedom forum" hosted by Al Jazeera, and last week, in a post to the microblogging site, he said he was joining the Egyptian protests against the wishes of some close to him. "Despite all the warnings I got from my relative and friends, I'll be there on #Jan25 protests. Anyone going to be in Gam'et Dewal protest?" the post reads.

"The Egyptian government started to take really stupid actions that will result in nothing but encouraging more people to protest," he said on January 26. "A government that is scared from #Facebook and #Twitter should govern a city in Farmville but not a country like #Egypt".

His tweets stopped the next day, just after he urged readers to pray for Egypt. "Very worried as it seems that government is planning a war crime tomorrow against people," he said. "We are all ready to die".

Google did not immediately respond to a request for comment, but the company told the WSJ: "We care deeply about the safety of our employees."

Separately, with Egypt in mind, the company has unveiled a service that lets people tweet via a voice connection. Anyone can tweet simply by leaving a voice mail at one of these international numbers: +16504194196 or +390662207294 or +97316199855. No internet connection is required, and the service will automatically add the hash tag "#egypt".

The service also lets you listen to these voice-to-tweet messages by dialing the same phone numbers. Or you can view them by visiting twitter.com/speak2tweet. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
NSA SOURCE CODE LEAK: Information slurp tools to appear online
Now you can run your own intelligence agency
Whistling Google: PLEASE! Brussels can only hurt Europe, not us
And Commish is VERY pro-Google. Why should we worry?
Microsoft: Your Linux Docker containers are now OURS to command
New tool lets admins wrangle Linux apps from Windows
Soz, web devs: Google snatches its Wallet off the table
Killing off web service in 3 months... but app-happy bonkers are fine
First in line to order a Nexus 6? AT&T has a BRICK for you
Black Screen of Death plagues early Google-mobe batch
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing and building an open ITOA architecture
Learn about a new IT data taxonomy defined by the four data sources of IT visibility: wire, machine, agent, and synthetic data sets.
5 critical considerations for enterprise cloud backup
Key considerations when evaluating cloud backup solutions to ensure adequate protection security and availability of enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Protecting against web application threats using SSL
SSL encryption can protect server‐to‐server communications, client devices, cloud resources, and other endpoints in order to help prevent the risk of data loss and losing customer trust.