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Print 42 comment(s) - last by Creche.. on Jul 7 at 3:01 PM

Censorship continues to be a big concern for China

A group of computer experts from the University of Cambridge claims that they are now able to circumvent the censorship mechanism that China uses to block unwanted content from reaching its citizens. Certain words are banned and certain websites are also banned. A user sitting within the country's network will not be able to reach websites for which the government has deemed inappropriate. China itself has defended its right to police the Internet for its citizens many times.

The group of researchers say that China's firewall is based on a a series of Cisco routers and the products work by censoring keywords. When a user wishes to access a websites that's banned, the router returns reset packets to the foreign website, severing the connection -- the data transmission is stopped at the foreign end-point. Using this bit of information on how the Cisco routers work, the researchers were able to find their way around the firewall by creating a system that ignores the reset packets sent by the Chinese routers.

Along with their discovery, the researchers also found that it was possible to create a denial-of-service (DoS) attack from within the firewall using the router's own blocking mechanisms. By masquerading the source IP address of a banned website to one that's within China's network, the researchers are able to ban users from within the network from accessing a Chinese government website for example.

Richard Clayton, spokesperson for the laboratory at the university told reporters that the researchers had reported the findings to the Chinese Computer Emergency Response Team.


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cat and mouse
By Kuroyama on 7/4/2006 3:23:19 PM , Rating: 2
Unfortunately this is a cat and mouse game, because they'll just fix their network to handle this method of attack. Would be nice if people in countries like China, Saudia Arabia, etc. could access sites their governments don't like.

Perhaps that's a bit hypocritical since I don't want people in the US to be able to view kiddy porn. I think "our government sucks" is quite different then abusing children, but I suppose it's not clear where to draw the line (is fomenting revolt in China OK? is it OK in the US?).





RE: cat and mouse
By bersl2 on 7/4/2006 4:37:09 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Perhaps that's a bit hypocritical since I don't want people in the US to be able to view kiddy porn.


Shouldn't you be more concerned about the people making said material, since this is where the welfare of the children is actually being violated?

Having made this argument before, I know that people don't react well to being told that they're wrong about this IMO, but I think that it's both an unnecessary abridgement of personal liberties and a waste of resources to pursue viewers of such material as opposed to creators. Thus, I see no justification for mandatory filtering of the Internet in any way.


RE: cat and mouse
By Howard on 7/4/2006 5:31:44 PM , Rating: 3
There wouldn't be so much of it if there weren't an audience for it (child porn).


RE: cat and mouse
By bob661 on 7/4/2006 6:44:46 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
There wouldn't be so much of it if there weren't an audience for it (child porn).
Bullshit! These child pr0n people aren't in the entertainment industry for God's sake. This isn't a busines with shareholders and customers wanting a product. These are sickos fulfilling their sick dreams providing a means for other sickos to fulfill their sick dreams. Child pr0n didn't start with the internet, it just makes it easier for the sickos to get the content.


RE: cat and mouse
By bob661 on 7/4/2006 6:46:54 PM , Rating: 2
Also, I think the internet makes it easier to catch these people because they leave a trail to be traced by the police and they can be fooled into thinking that the police are children. Otherwise, they would be underground and virtually impossible to catch.


RE: cat and mouse
By flexy on 7/4/2006 10:40:56 PM , Rating: 4
" I don't want people in the US to be able to view kiddy porn. "

I dont really think it's a matter what one personally "wants" other people to consume/see.

The inet will always be a place where there is literally *everything* on your finger tips...and "everything" includes things which are immoral/illegal/criminal.

It's the responsilbility (and morale) of the individual to chose from that variety. Blocking out content doesn't make a potential child-molester less "dangerous" - he might as well get his fix from other places. The problem itself stays. (The content does NOT MAKE the criminal....instead, the content is there because of criminal's/pervert's (so to speak) "demand" - otherwise that stuff wouldnt exist on the internet.

I just dont like blaming the MEDIUM - and blaming it for the fact that it is a medium with a HIGH amount of freedom and variety. (Mirror of society basically)

Because the "freedom" in the medium (internet) is a GOOD thing - all other problems arising from there have to be solved OTHERWISE.

Its the PARENTS responsilbility to watch over what their kids do, it's an individuals responsibility whether they d/l copyrighted music/warez....

This is basically the principle of a free society - and the chinese gvt and similiar restrictive gvts for sure are going the OTHER way in deciding FOR the individual "what is good for them".

Certain news, MIGHT BE BAD for a citizen...so block it.
This and this mightbe bad, BLOCK IT.
Reports which are NOT in sync what the gvt thinks are BAD - so BLOCK EM.

etc..etc...

It's dangerous saying "i dont want xyz to see zyx on the internet"....maybe for you it's k-porn (understandable !), for another person it's WHATEVER....it can be EVERYTHING, political controversial material, religious texts which someone doesnt agree, sexual preference, whatever.

People/Gvts did that throughout history btw by "defining" standards what is "bad" for a citizen and what is deemed appropriate. It's censorship - and EVERY government/regime will ALWAYS have a GOOD excuse and have a strong opinion that this censorship is only benefitial and legitimate and "good" and moral.

However, i really prefer making MY own decisions what is appropriate and where i get my news from etc.


RE: cat and mouse
By jtesoro on 7/5/2006 12:41:48 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Shouldn't you be more concerned about the people making said material, since this is where the welfare of the children is actually being violated?

Agree.
quote:
There wouldn't be so much of it if there weren't an audience for it (child porn).

Agree also.

The approach of addressing both the supply and demand side of the kiddie porn issue is valid. Authorities should find ways of identifying and catching those who produce and distribute it. At the same time they can also make it difficult to get kiddie porn in the first place. What to do with the viewers themselves, I'm not sure. But some combination of punishment, education and medical treatment might work.


RE: cat and mouse
By BZDTemp on 7/5/2006 3:54:25 AM , Rating: 2
I'm afraid you're pretty wrong about it not being an industry!

In fact I'm pretty sure a good deal of the perverts making kiddie porn is partly or even fully in it for the money. It's no different than anything else - if there is a buyer willing to pay enough, or enough buyer willing to pay a little, chances are someone will also sell.

Here in Denmark hte ISP's are either running, or just about to run, filters to block kiddie porn and while I'm against censorship I must say that in this case it's hard to be againt. Fortunately I'm very sure the censorship thing will not spread as it has demonstrated not long ago censorship is not really something we do here in Denmark (Think cartoons depicting Allah and burning flags, then you know what Denmark thinks about censorship and freedom of speech)


RE: cat and mouse
By Dfere on 7/5/2006 1:05:41 PM , Rating: 2
I agree. We should therefore seriously consider reducing the population of people who wish to view it. Lifetime incarceration for offenders with no internet privledges, or the gas chamber.

No demand for a good, no supply chain will continue to exist.

Simple economics.


RE: cat and mouse
By Creche on 7/7/2006 2:56:04 PM , Rating: 2
Alright, I have a couple important points to make here.

1. Most people who look at child porn get it from freenet, not a website (google freenet if you've never heard of it), so censorship doesn't really come in to play in blocking it.

2. Education and medical treatment? The people looking at child porn aren't stupid OR medically sick. I wouldn't even say that they're mentally sick, two of my closest friends like child porn...and I also wouldn't like to see them in jail for life or gassed. It's easy to demonize people you've never met or interacted with, but most of the audience for child porn are normal people with friends, family, and a 40 hour a week job. Those of you proposing harsh punishments, imagine if you'd still feel that way if your best friend or your father was into child porn (you might say their not, but most people who are won't admit it due to the fact it's a crime).

3. If you really want to cut down on the issue people have, the abuse of children, you should bring the entire operation above ground. The fact that child porn's illegal is part of the problem, it means the guys who are making it operate out of basements, and usually use force to make kids not talk about it. People attracted to younger children have been around for thousands of years, and a long time ago it wasn't considered unusual to marry and sleep with a 13 year old. Child porn isn't going away, for better of for worse, so if you want to make sure the children involved with it aren't abused, the best way to do that is turn it into an industry with strict government supervision.

4. The people looking at child porn aren't the problem. In fact, I'd say it's good for them to have access to it. Since child porn became reasonably popular, child abuse rates have started dropping, since potential pedophiles can get their fix with pictures instead of real kids. It was the same way with rape-based porn.

5. Censoring anything, and I mean ANYTHING, is an incredibly slippery slope. In my opinion, all obscenity laws (a bunch of laws with a fancy word that lets courts violate the first amendment) should be discarded. Abusing children is bad, yes, but the way to stop it is to go after the people abusing the children. Pursuing people looking at child porn because they're supporting these businesses would be like blaming people who wore cotten clothes for slavery. It just doesn't make sense. And you can already see the effects of this now, in some places in america people aren't allowed porn featuring beastiality or necrophilia, or in some places even extreme BDSM. Hell, even having to bleep the word fuck on TV comes from obscenity laws. And if you try and further the censorship of one of these materials, things are just going to degrade further.

Hope not too many people are mad at me about that...I understand there are some very unpopular viewpoints in there, but hopefully you'll at least think about them. Feel free to make baseless accusations about my own sexual preferences or moral fiber below, I collect them (have a big text file).


"So if you want to save the planet, feel free to drive your Hummer. Just avoid the drive thru line at McDonalds." -- Michael Asher

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