A tech company in Germany is to be investigated by state spy chiefs over reports that it has helped Iran censor the internet.

Softqloud GmbH – from Meerbusch, near the city of Dusseldorf – is said to be helping an Iranian service provider restrict internet access in the country amid the nationwide hijab protests.

The company is allegedly a front for Iran, according to a report from German media and a non-profit independent research centre called Correctiv.

Photo shows an Instagram post of Arvancloud, undated photo. Softqloud company in the city of Meerbusch, near Dusseldorf, Germany, which is a branch of Arvancloud, is allegedly helping Iran to cut off the internet. (@arvancloud/Newsflash)

The report states that it is linked to an Iranian company called ArvanCloud or Abr Arvan which helps disconnect the internet in Iran.

It is not even clear if Softqloud has any other contracts in Germany or is simply a front company.

ArvanCloud is said to have signed an agreement with the Iranian government to allow greater state control of online content and greater surveillance of Iranian citizens.

ArvanCloud, however, denied the claims and stated that its contract with Softqloud, was ended by the German company on 30th September.

ArvanCloud added: “A cloud service provider is not able to play a role in censorship of the Internet, neither in Iran nor in any other part of the world.”

German Foreign Minister Analena Berbuk has stated that the matter will be investigated by security agencies.

She went on to say that if the allegations prove to be true, Softqloud will face legal consequences.

A project aimed to assist internet freedom in Iran, known as The Snowflake Project, has been set up in Germany as a countermeasure to internet censorship in Iran.

People living in Germany with access to the internet can install a ‘Snowflake’ extension in their internet browser (the extension is currently only available for Chrome and Firefox users) which sets up an online “launch pad” that allows internet users in Iran to access the Tor network.

This is a free browser with encrypted traffic that allows people in Iran to access state-censored sites anonymously.

This virtual launching platform is apparently set up “invisibly” on your computer while the project’s website can be found at: https://snowflake.torproject.org/