China Internet & how to Bypass Internet Restrictions in China with a VPN

China restrictions on webAs the second largest nation in the world, the People’s Republic of China boasts a strong Internet presence. Other Asian nations such as Taiwan, Sri Lanka, and Nepal are similarly well-connected. The strict regulatory practice of the Chinese government dictates a heavy level of website filtering in China and other Asian nations. Violating Internet restrictions in China can carry a severe penalty, and many dissidents have been jailed for these offenses.

History of China/Asia

The People’s Republic of China occupies the greater part of East Asia and has the world’s largest population at 1.35 billion. The capital is Beijing and China’s Communist government rules over several smaller provinces including Taiwan.

China has been a world power for almost as long as the modern world has existed. The sheer land mass of the country as well as its powerful military make it a major player in the political affairs of the day. Much of China’s economy is driven by exports and it is the second-largest in the world today.

Officially founded in 1949, China has become the face of modern-day Communism. As such, the country is subjected to a significant amount of government control.

Internet in China/Asia

China has the largest base of Internet users in the world. They also have one of the oldest Internet infrastructures. The Internet made its appearance in China in 1987 with the transmission of an email that said, “Across the Great Wall, we can reach every corner of the world.” China was aware from the very beginning of the tremendous possibility of the Internet.

In 2012 China had over 500 million Internet users. They project over 700 million users by the end of 2013. Other Asian nations such as Sri Lanka and Nepal and the Philippines have not reached anywhere near the level of penetration achieved in China, but many Asian countries remain impoverished.

The majority of Internet users in China have broadband service. The cost of the service is very affordable for even lower income families. Over 3 million websites are hosted and developed in China, and this works to increase China’s online presence.

Internet Filtering in China/Asia

All online access routes in China are owned by the Chinese government. This means that businesses and individuals essentially rent bandwidth from the state. As you can imagine, this type of ownership allows the Chinese government to effectively control what is viewed online. There is a similar approach to Internet service in other Asian nations such as North Korea.

China’s Internet repression is considered to be the worst in the world. A recent report by Amnesty International reveals that China has jailed a record number of journalists for violating the state’s stance on what can be posted online.  China even maintains an Internet Police Force with more than 30,000 officers on active duty.

Other Asian nations, such as North Korea, have followed China’s example by exercising strict Internet restrictions. At the present time, these are a few of the types of websites which are blocked throughout Asia:

  • Political Blogs. Any website, blog, or news outlet which criticizes the Chinese government will likely be blocked. If the offensive posts originated from within the country, those who posted them are likely to be arrested.
  • Pornographic websites. They certainly don’t restrict them the way Arab countries do, but China has been known to block pornography.
  • Search terms. Some search terms are blocked in Google results and the results of other search engines like Bing and Yahoo. This speaks of how seriously the government monitors Internet activity.

It is also interesting to note that China blocked the social networking sites Facebook and Twitter in 2009 because of the state’s inability to properly control or monitor these services. You can read more about the great firewall of china here

Unblocking websites in China/Asia

If you want to experience true Internet freedom in China and the great majority of Asia, your most reliable option is to use a VPN account like the one offered on our site VPN-accounts.com. Without this type of service, you will encounter severe limitations and restrictions on the Asian continent.

A VPN is very effective in allowing Internet users to access Facebook, Twitter, and a host of other services like Netflix, Hulu, and BBC iPlayer which are not available in China and throughout Asia. A VPN gives you an added level of security in addition to making these websites available, and that added security could save you a lot of trouble in the long run given the restrictions in China.

For the latest news about China check the guardian news feed!

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Access Blocked Websites in China

About a year ago, one of our users submitted their story. It would be safe to assume that this particular customer was a fan of our vpn account services! We are grateful for the time users take to submit what we call “big” reviews since most the vpn reviews submitted are much shorted in nature. We have already posted a few vpn reviews on the blog and have a few more to share the coming weeks.

I am currently living in China, and ever since I moved here I have been having problems with my internet and I have been unable to access blocked websites.

I know back home in the US we have freedom of speech and the government or Internet Service Providers (ISP) cannot or are not allowed to prevent us from accessing certain blocked websites. Off course there was the issue with wikileaks.org but who knows what will happened there!   Unlike the US, here in China (Beijing …etc) and in some other places like the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Iran, Oman, Ethiopia ..etc you cannot access blocked websites like YouTube, SKYPE, Twitter, Facebook, anything with adult content , some dating sites and sometimes even gmail and hotmail.   The more a website is blocked the more you want to access blocked website!

With that in mind I have been scouring the internet to find an easy solution to enable me to access blocked websites. There are options of using an Anonymiser or even typing the IP address instead of URL. Also found a solution involving google cache and google translate but the simplest and most stress free solution was a Virtual Private Network or a VPN to access blocked websites.

So to save you the research, here is what I found.

A VPNaccount uses VPN technology creating an encrypted tunnel between the user (me) and a server. Once the user (me) has connected to the server, the user receives a new IP address. This IP address is then used for all Internet communications (giving you access to blocked websites) until the user disconnects from the server. Both incoming and outgoing Internet traffic will be directed through this tunnel and is protected with a Secure Encrypted Connection.

Since I wanted to access blocked websites from the USA, I chose to USA VPN. This provided me with a US IP address enabling me to access websites available to anyone residing in the USA.  Hello Facebook!

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Beijing seeking to hire internet censors

Source June 17 2009 FT

The city of Beijing is planning to hire thousands of internet censors in a fresh sign of the authorities’ attempts to tighten their grip on cyberspace.

The city will seek to employ at least 10,000 “internet volunteers” before the end of this year to monitor “harmful” websites and content, said an official at the municipal authority’s information office.

Chinese local governments and Communist party branches often pay web commentators to influence online opinion. But it is unusual for officials to admit the practice and the big recruitment drive gives a rare view of the resources China uses to try to control the internet.

The move comes amid an outcry over the national government’s attempt to ensure that every new personal computer sold in China is equipped with web filtering software. The ministry of industry and information technology notified computer makers last month that they would be required from July 1 to include Green Dam/Youth Escort – a programme developed under commission by the government – with every new PC.

Using a VPN connection, everything you do will be anonymous and encrypted via our servers located around the world. You would be able to access bocked sites with out VPN service!

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China strengthens the Great Firewall

Source October 1 2009 TheRegister

The Chinese government has used its unrivalled net censorship apparatus to attack parts of the Tor network ahead of the 60th anniversary of communist rule, according to activists.

The Tor Project Inc, the non-profit that oversees development of the network, said China’s Great Firewall began blocking IP addresses on Friday. The news follows an update last week to blocking technology used by ISPs, known as “Blue Shield”.\

“We knew this day would come,” the Tor Project said.

Tor – originally developed for the US Navy – is used by many Chinese dissidents to conceal their identity and protect their privacy. It allows them to access banned material such as websites about Tibet, the Tiananmen Square Massacre and the recent Uigur uprising.

The Tor network was also recently widely used in Iran to disseminate information about violent clashes following the presidential election.

About 80 per cent of public relays are now blocked inside China, the Tor Project said. Public relays are most users’ gateway to Tor, which beats tracking and blocking by encrypting and bouncing traffic around a random global labyrinth of proxy servers run by members of the network.

China’s Great Firewall is implemented by the country’s ISPs so it is able to block this first hop onto Tor using the directory of public relays. However, Chinese users are cannot be completely denied access to Tor. It is also possible to hop on to the network via a “bridge” relay.

Bridge relays were added to the network as a counter-measure to blocking. No list of their IP addresses is publicly available. The Tor Project called on members of the network to volunteer to run more bridge relays to help Chinese users.

Using a VPN connection, everything you do will be anonymous and encrypted via our servers located around the world. You would be able to open bocked sites!  You can also read more about internet censorship in china here.

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YouTube & Accessing YouTube When Blocked

unblock youtube with a vpn accountYouTube is notoriously popular. Created in 2005 by three former Paypal employees, YouTube is now one of the most famous streaming video sites ever created. To give you an idea about the immensity of YouTube, there are now 100 million viewers and 14.8 billion videos viewed to date.

YouTube is a multi-faceted video exhibition that focuses primarily on movies, music, education, and independent creativity. Enriching the lives of countless numbers of viewers, it continues to shine as an advantageous and lucrative content exhibition. YouTube originally established itself through public notoriety and serves as a valuable source of demographic information. Commonly searched keyword statistics depict what consumers want to see and the ever changing interests of the world. Demographics present YouTube with insight they need to create suitable content and cater to popular interests.

This video and audio content network is incredibly easy to use and master within minutes. The strong point of this network is in it’s size and simplicity, easily allowing anyone with computer video footage to upload and share their life with the world. Sadly, many people abuse the freedom of YouTube and upload various forms of copyrighted content. This copyright infringement is uncontrollable in a free for all content medium such as YouTube. So, YouTube had to get crafty.

Advertising on YouTube has recently been introduced at the bottom of the videos, primarily instrumented because of copyrighted material being blatantly broadcasted on the site. With billions of ten minute videos being viewed, it was decided to generate additional revenue from the site. Since the introduction of this newly constructed advertising method, popular musicians are demanding they receive their cut. With top performing advertisements creating six figure incomes, it is the majorities opinion the artists should recieve the lion’s share of this newfound revenue.

What’s next for YouTube? With modern technology and increasing collaboration of electronics, you may soon see a more interactive YouTube. Interactivity and instant gratification play a huge role in all lives, on and off the Internet. If there is a way to have more fun, make more money, and increase levels of overall satisfaction, it’s going to happen. Watching a video while simultaneously interacting with it’s surroundings represents uncharted market territory. Interactivity wins over recorded content a million fold, and it’s only a matter of time before seeing this technology is commonplace. Meaning, the possibility exists but has yet to be capitalized by a subscriber base as large as YouTube’s.

In some countries of the world, videos on YouTube are a banned form of viewable content. Censorship structure, designed for the common good of their countries, see YouTube as a means to create insubordination and political or religious slander. Countries with these censorship restrictions view the majority of todays content to be a crime against God as well as their way of life. Using a VPN connection, everything you do will be anonymous and encrypted via our servers located around the world. You would be able to access bocked sites and if YouTube is blocked you can unblock YouTube using VPN-accounts.com

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Twitter not loading in China

Source June 2 2009 WSJ

Twitterers around China are reporting that the popular micro-blogging site Twitter.com appears to be blocked, the first time the site has been widely inaccessible to users in the country.

Twitter users began reporting difficulty getting on the site late on Tuesday afternoon in China, just days ahead of the sensitive 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown. Twitterers said access was still possible through some Twitter clients, such as Tweetdeck, but users trying to access their accounts through other clients, such as Twhirl, said they also encountered problems.

In the past, Twitter has proved remarkably free of interference. It gained prominence in China during the immediate aftermath of last year’s big earthquake in Sichuan.

But in recent weeks, activist groups have reported a tightening of security in China, linking it to the upcoming Tiananmen anniversary. Human Rights in China, based in New York, said Tuesday that authorities have detained an elderly freelance writer from Taizhou in Zhejiang province, who published an open letter to China’s top leaders recently asking for equal rights and social security for ex-Tiananmen Square prisoners. (China’s Ministry of Public Security deferred requests for comment to Taizhou’s local public security bureau, which declined to answer any questions). The controls also appear to be spreading to the Internet, though it’s always difficult to tell whether a site has been purposely blocked or whether other technical problems may be to blame.

The Chinese government doesn’t comment on specific access issues, but sites such as YouTube and Flickr are intermittently unavailable to users in China, especially around important government meetings or anniversaries. YouTube has been blocked for several weeks in China, according to reports on Harvard University’s Herdict Web. Users in China also reported that Flickr was inaccessible on Tuesday afternoon.

True to form, Twitterers quickly adopted a hash tag for Tweets on the service’s problems: #twitterblock. Users also pushed #gfw, which stands for “great firewall,” into the top trending topics on Tuesday.

Using a VPN service, everything you do will be anonymous and encrypted via our servers located around the world. You would be able to access bocked sites!

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China Is Using Vpn To Conduct Disinformation Campaign

China has recently been accused of using a VPN to spread disinformation on social media. Most of the posts have apparently been made in response to the Hong Kong protests taking place in the Summer of 2019. While it may not seem strange that another superpower is trying to influence public opinion on social media, it is curious that Chinese operatives used a VPN to accomplish their goals.

China, Hong Kong, and VPN

Hong Kong has been rocked by ongoing protests that began in the first half of 2019. The protesters are making a statement against Beijing’s efforts to crack down on extradition policies in Hong Kong. China technically rules Hong Kong as a special administrative region, but there are many differences between Hong Kong and China. Namely, residents of Hong Kong enjoy freedom from an authoritarian regime.

That changed when the government announced it would extradite individuals who have sought refuge in Hong Kong to avoid punishment for crimes committed in China. This did not go over well with student activists in Hong Kong that have long called for democracy.

Images from the protests, mostly unflattering to the Chinese government, made their way onto social media. Unlike in China, social media networks in Hong Kong can be accessed without a VPN. China blocks access to almost 140 popular websites which include Google and Facebook. The common belief is that the government wished to strictly control what is allowed to be posted on social media.

In Hong Kong the social networks were filled with images of one million protesters. While China was not in a position to prevent the access of social media, it appears to have adopted an old maxim: if you can’t beat them, join them.

Hypocrisy and Disinformation in China

At some point the Chinese government decided to mount a disinformation campaign using Facebook and Twitter. The only problem was accessing these networks since they are blocked by the Great Firewall of China. That was a small hurdle to overcome. The Chinese apparently used a VPN to evade the block and make it appear that the social media posts were coming from inside Hong Kong and other areas.

Twitter discovered 936 accounts that were created in the People’s Republic of China. These accounts were then used, according to The Verge to “undermine the legitimacy and political positions of the protest movement on the ground.”

Facebook took a similar approach and suspended numerous fake accounts which are believed to have originated in China for the purposes of disinformation. All of these social media accounts are believed to have been accessed with VPNs. YouTube was also impacted. Some 200 YouTube accounts were suspended in the wake of the revelations.

The hypocrisy here is apparent. China has effectively banned the sale of VPNs in the country. This measure was taken specifically to prevent individuals in the country from accessing blocked websites. Yet, the country had no problem using VPN to spread its own disinformation on social media about the Hong Kong protests. Many feel compelled to call out the government for its hypocrisy, but that will have little impact. China is a superpower that demands authoritarian control of its citizens.

Why Does China Hate VPN?

The protests in Hong Kong and China’s reaction have cast a light on why the Chinese government takes such a strong stand against VPNs. The see the technology as a threat to their ability to control what the rest of the world sees, hears, or reads when it comes to things happening on the other side of the Great Wall.

VPNs in China serve a very important purpose. They are the method by which journalists and dissidents can get information out of the country. There are also Chinese citizens who are engaged in protests against government policies. If these people were discovered the price to pay would be high. They use a VPN to evade the blocks and also to protect their privacy to prevent being discovered.

Of course there are other reasons why someone in China might want to use a VPN. They might be a US citizen working in the country who wants to stay connected to friends and family with Facebook, Maybe someone that is traveling on a vacation would like to access the local news from their city.

China probably doesn’t like this either, but make no mistake. The country is far more concerned with people sending images outside of the country that portray China in an unflattering way. In Hong Kong there was a similar concern. China did not want images of protests to escape the region, especially if the Chinese government was compelled to use force against the protesters.

If you or someone that you know is planning a visit to China, take steps now to get your VPN service from VPN-accounts.com. You may not be able to access our site to purchase a VPN when you arrive on the mainland in China. It is better to take advantage of our generous pricing and secure your VPN service now.

3 Steps for a VPN

01

Sign upGet an affordable VPN account.

02

ConnectConfigure the VPN on your device.

03

Enjoy VPNEnjoy the benefits of a VPN today.

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Connect & Enjoy: Internet Freedom, Privacy & security.