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Access Your Email Abroad - Knowledgebase / Email and Collaboration / Email - OIT Service Center

Access Your Email Abroad

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Access problems to Google content has been noted in certain countries, including China, Vietnam and Iran.  Usually, the entire country is not blocking Google, it will depend where you are connecting to the internet. If you are planning to travel abroad and have concerns about accessing your mail, here are some tips.  You can print this page and bring it with you.

If you have trouble accessing, please try these alternate methods:

  • Instead of, try

  • Connect to Brown's Virtual Private Network (VPN) by visiting  This will route your traffic through Brown's network. 

  • You can also download the VPN client from  This also will connect you to the Brown network, but has added functionality such as the ability to run keyed software.

  • If you are having problems because you are using an older computer, you can access the HTML version of your email at

  • You could temporarily forward a copy of all of your GoogleApps@Brown mail to an alternate email address.   This can be done in your Settings, under Forwarding and IMAP/POP.  However, if you are having trouble accessing GoogleApps@Brown, you may also have trouble accessing other email providers.

  • As a last resort, you could try a Tunneling Proxy Server.  In countries where content is blocked, this is a common way to access many websites. For more information on Tunneling Proxy Servers, see Wikipedia.

  • If you continue to have trouble, contact the IT Service Center, who would be happy to assist you in troubleshooting the problem.
  • Google maintains a service which shows the traffic patterns from various countries, and this can be helpful in determining whether access is being blocked in a country.


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