The Golden Shield Project the main part of which
is the Great Firewall of China
is a censorship and surveillance project
operated by the Ministry of Public Security.
By the latest estimates, the Internet has become top target for 5 milliards people all over the world. Having acquired such a scale, it becomes a global issue. The decision to control the global network at the country level is not spontaneous. This is not a whim satisfying the sense of a man’s absolute power. The history demonstrates that people want to feel powerful under any circumstances. And with the development of new technologies terrifically exceeding human abilities both physical and mental, mankind has become fearful of the up-to-date inventions. Such inventions as neural networks, which are able to distinguish the sea from the sky in your favorite photo and paint a masterpiece no worse than Van Gogh, or a robot health worker, which contains in its base all the clinical records and determines a diagnosis, which lands doctors in difficulties, because it appears one in a million times, make people grow suspicions at their abilities. Taking into account all these facts, it is getting clear that the Internet restrictions should have appeared.
Today’s common issue for consideration is the question of the legality of the restrictions being imposed on the Internet itself and its users in different countries. On one level, the Internet, which gives free-for-all opportunity to communicate and exchange information, allows adversaries, such as terrorists, computer fraudsters and crackers, bringing their unlawful plans into action. Without doubt it should be prevented. On another level, the Internet is a world wide web, which is created to give equal opportunities to all people on our planet and these restrictions can destroy its image. The answer is that there is no absolute decision. We should have the sense to the issue and not to waive to extreme measures.
Unfortunately, it can already be stated that the extreme measures, which restrict the Internet users in their ordinary needs, have been put in place in several countries. For example, such country as Iran is going to make the last steps on the way to the ‘National Informational Net’ and launch it in 2017; if speaking about India, one may have already heard that the government authorities are to set a new law considering the Internet restrictions in India into action, which will lead to heavy fines and imprisonment. Those two mentioned countries are not the exceptions.
There are many others who conceal their illegal actions against common Internet customers, when lurking them and scanning their private information, because none of us has forgotten about Edward Snowden’s revelations of the NSA wrongdoing. One of the countries that deserve being mentioned is Chinese People's Republic.
Have you already heard about the Golden Shield Project?
The Golden Shield Project is the Internet filtering system that blocks access to the forbidden resources of the Internet. The only two cities of the country, which are free from the censorship, are Hong Kong and Macao, for these two cities access to the Internet is absolutely free.
The Great Firewall of China, as it is also called, presents a software appliance, which development was started in 1998 and went live in 2003. According to experts’ estimates, the cost of the system creation amounted $800 millions USD. Such huge companies as American corporation IBM took part in its creation.
The Great Firewall has become world-wide notorious due to its high level of censorship. The Internet in China is extremely confined, thus the users have limited access to the sources.
Why does China censor the Internet? What does China censor?
These questions must be answered by the government. It is known that the potentially blocked websites and resources have been chosen by the Communist Party in order to save the morality and principles of the government in place. Now, we can notice that there are many blocked websites in China.
The governors have blocked those websites that deal with content:
- that criticizes the communist party;
- has users’ discontent comments on the government blocking the free access to the Internet;
- relates to the development of freedom of speech in China;
- demonstrates materials with sexual implication.
What Internet resources are blocked in China?
The list of banned sources contains such social nets as Twitter, Facebook, Google+, Google Blogspot, WorldPress.com and others, media world sites including New York Times, New York Times Chinese, Bloomberg, YouTube and other information assets, some web search engines like Google, DuckDuckGo, Yahoo Hong Kong and etc., and other online application resources as Microsoft OneDrive, Dropbox, Google play and others.
How does the Great Firewall of China work and filter inadequate for their policy resources?
There are several techniques that the government agency uses to deprive the users from accessing to these inadequate websites. There are such methods as:
- IP addresses blocking.
- DNS-query and data packet filtering and their redirection.
- blocking of some VPN services.
So, how to break the firewall of China? How to get around the Golden Shield of China?
The Chinese Internet history and the Great Firewall of China, in particular, have brought a lot of noise and now this issue is of interest to different nations. They usually wonder whether there is the Internet use behind the Great Firewall of China. The Chinese will answer that breaking through the Great Firewall of China is challenging but still possible. Some of the advanced customers are trying to crack the firewall by using Tor or proxy servers to bypass the system. But the most progressive users avoid the restrictions with the help of a VPN service. Despite of the anonymizers and proxy-servers this solution provides its clients not only with IP-address hindering but also with the Internet traffic encryption, which gives more confidence in one’s privacy. Inside of the Great Firewall of China it is quite difficult to find an effective VPN, which will not be detected and eliminated by the government services, because the Golden Shield of China is reinforced to prevent encryption usage. The solution is here, there is a great resource by using which one Chinese Internet user can easily find the way in order to pass over the Great Firewall of China and get access to such websites as YouTube and BBC News.
In conclusion, it may be said that the more restrictions and censorship are imposed by any authorities on the Internet users, the bigger impedance it will arise. Since such concepts as freedom of speech and choice are the constants of modern democratic world, nobody has the right to deprive people of the freedom. The Internet has been created as a global network combining different local nets with the main purpose, so that people from all over the world could be free to make contacts with each other and share any information they need, and use any opportunities offered by various resources. The authorities covering incapability of the form of government under the limitations they impose can’t inspire respect across the population of their country.