Gmail Access Cut in China

PHOTO: A surveillance camera is seen in front of the Google China headquarters in Beijing in this March 23, 2010 file photo.Andy Wong/AP Photo
A surveillance camera is seen in front of the Google China headquarters in Beijing in this March 23, 2010 file photo.

Access to Google's Gmail email service dropped to a near-zero level over the weekend in China, leading many to wonder if it was the latest move by regulators to counter the search giant's presence in the country.

Google told ABC News that the company has "checked and there's nothing technically wrong on our end."

Data from Google's Transparency Report shows Gmail traffic plummeted to nearly zero Friday afternoon, with the flat line extending through the weekend.

Preliminary data showed a slight uptick today, but access to Gmail has not been restored to previous use levels.

China's state-run Internet Information Office did not respond to a request for comment today and the country's foreign ministers said she was not aware of a block, according to the Associated Press.

Gmail users in China were previously only able to access the service through tablets, smartphones and third-party applications such as Microsoft Outlook.

Google shut down its search engine in mainland China in 2009 in protest of the country's online censorship. Since then, access to Google's suite of products has been severely limited and blocked in China.

Gmail is hardly alone. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr and other popular foreign web sites that carry user-generated content are also blocked in China.