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Psiphon: Eluding Government Web Censors December 21, 2006

Posted by publicpolitics in Censorship.


Deep in a basement lab at the University of Toronto a team of political scientists, software engineers and computer-hacking activists, or “hactivists,” have created the latest, and some say most advanced tool yet in allowing Internet users to circumvent government censorship of the Web.

New York Times

The Psiphon program was released on December 1 in response to growing Web censorship, particularly in China. The University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab designed Psiphon, and it works via a person in an uncensored country downloading the program. The user who wishes to view websites and blogs in a censored country then logs in to the person in the uncensored country’s computer, which with the download, acts as a virtual access proxy. Once the censored user clears the browser history, the program’s designers claim there is no trace of the user having accessed forbidden sites. The Citizen Lab is a member of the Open Net Initiative, which, when it opened in 2000, monitored China, Iran, and Saudi Arabia. Since then , internet filtering has increased, and now the Initiative monitors over 40 countries.

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