April 6, 2015
China’s siege over the freedom of Internet now affects the private networks as well. Authorities have found a sophisticated technology that can carefully monitor every move. People ended up being controlled about everything they do or say, in the online environment. But probably the hardest hit is towards VPN services. Three of the providers that ensured accessibility on Chinese territory reported already to have been banned by the local authorities. On the black list of banned VPN providers are Astrill, Golden Frog and StrongVPN.
Slowly, it looks that the alternative methods are also smothered, in the attempt of the Chinese authorities to control every move. They did state a while ago that they plan on blocking the private networks as well, but no one ever believed it will going to happen. Well, at least not this fast. In this case, not only the Chinese users were affected, but also many foreign investors that were using the services to remain in contact with their homelands and other business partners. Not to mention that some of the most popular website, used all over the world like Google, Facebook and Twitter, are completely banned in China.
Although, it seems that China does not want to destroy the large corporations present on their territory, as the VPN services they use have not been ban yet. The primary target for the used restrictions is private users, which use VPNs to access websites from their mobile gadgets. The VPN service works in the way that it created an encrypted pathway between the user and the site he wants to access, which is supposed to make this movement less visible to someone from the outside. But it seems that the Chinese firewall suffered a lot of changes and updates, making it very sensitive to any moves and detecting what everybody wishes to do over the Internet. It just shows how bad the Chinese government wanted to acquire sovereignty over the entire Internet, at least in their territory.
The evolution in the technology of Chinese filtering and blocking system were confirmed by the managers of the VPN services. They admitted that the attack that affected their networks is very different, and more complicated, than the ones they have witnessed in the past. But not everything is lost, as they all work on restoring connectivity for their customers. They even released a message asking their clients to try and access their networks at hours that are not peak for online traffic, reducing the load on the system, and making the access more facile. Also, it is interesting that within a single VPN service, authorities blocked only a part of their servers, leaving the other untouched. Perhaps they select the ones that look most inconvenient.