File-hosting site Zippyshare has been online for more than 12 years, serving millions of users every day.
Stats from SimilarWeb indicate that traffic to the site has remained stable for some time, hovering around the 100 million visits per month mark. That positions the site well within the top 500 sites on the whole Internet, making it a major player in the file-hosting market.
The site is utilized by users all over the world but last month those in the UK suddenly found the platform inaccessible. At least initially, there was speculation that local Internet service providers had blocked the site but given the circumstances, that seemed unlikely.
The error messages received by users when attempting to access the site’s domain indicated that ISPs weren’t to blame and Zippyshare itself had probably begun blocking UK visitors. Even those using some UK-based VPN servers couldn’t access the platform either.
It’s been more than month since that unexplained problem first raised its head and the situation doesn’t appear to have changed for those in the UK since. Indeed, a new problem seems to have raised its head elsewhere in Europe.
This week, users of Zippyshare attempting to access the site from Germany began reporting that they too are experiencing the same issues, with visitors seeing the same “403 Forbidden” notice, as shown below;
Tips received by TorrentFreak from users in Germany indicate that the site cannot be reached from several ISPs including Vodafone, Deutsche Telekom, M-net, Pyur, Unitymedia, and others.
Changing DNS settings to point to other providers (such as Cloudflare or Google) doesn’t seem to help matters but we did manage to access the site using VPN servers located in Berlin and Frankfurt.
Zippyshare did not respond to our earlier request for comment and the site hasn’t made any announcements that would explain the ‘forbidden’ errors now being displayed across the EU’s most powerful countries.
While that’s a strange situation for a platform of Zippyshare’s scale and reach, stats provided by SimilarWeb reveal that the highest volume of visitors to the site are from Indonesia (13%) followed by Japan (9%), the United States (8%), Brazil (7%) and then India (4%).
This data suggests that countries in the EU are fairly insignificant in terms of traffic, which could explain the apparent apathy. Or, of course, Zippyshare might simply not want to talk about the problem in public, either voluntarily or otherwise, for a number of reasons.
Until the platform comments, speculation will continue.