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AI Censorship China Communications Encryption Your Rights Online

VPN Providers Say China Blocks Encryption Using Machine Learning Algorithms 111

Posted by timothy
from the man-vs-state-with-a-cast-of-millions dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The internet control in China seems to have been tightened recently, according to the Guardian. Several VPN providers claimed that the censorship system can 'learn, discover and block' encrypted VPN protocols. Using machine learning algorithms in protocol classification is not exactly a new topic in the field. And given the fact that even the founding father of the 'Great Firewall,' Fan Bingxing himself, has also written a paper about utilizing machine learning algorithm in encrypted traffic analysis, it would be not surprising at all if they are now starting to identify suspicious encrypted traffic using numerically efficient classifiers. So the arm race between anti-censorship and surveillance technology goes on."
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VPN Providers Say China Blocks Encryption Using Machine Learning Algorithms

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  • Noise. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 20, 2012 @11:29AM (#42348021)

    Raise the noise floor, hide your encrypted data among legitimate looking traffic. For various meanings of legitimate. One can only fathom the amount of useless garbage that gets passed on backbone links. From malfunctioning programs, unknown millions of installations of random programs phoning home for updates, spam, web bots, ddos, facebook. An endless sea of data for your subversive little packets to get lost in.

    Less efficient? Sure. But a lot harder to find.

    So what if they have adaptive learning sniffers. We can invent adaptive learning garbage a whole lot faster than they can keep up.

  • Re:This is true (Score:5, Insightful)

    by sadboyzz (1190877) on Thursday December 20, 2012 @01:13PM (#42349455)

    I find SSH tunneling to be much less efficient than OpenVPN. With OpenVPN I can have a more-or-less usable remote VNC desktop from Beijing to New York, which is not possible using SSH tunneling.

    Anyway, that is not a real solution, as there is nothing to prevent them from cutting off SSH connections when they feel like it. There is no technical solution to a political problem.

  • by kawabago (551139) on Thursday December 20, 2012 @02:59PM (#42350955)
    When an authority suppresses a minority, the minority builds resentment. If there is no outlet, the resentment grows into rebellion. If the authority suppresses the dissent it doesn't go away. It festers. Eventually all of the minorities in China will all be unhappy and ready for a full revolt. If authority tightens it's grip, the country will explode. Angry upset minorities rebelling simultaneously across all of China would be more than the authority can suppress. It will become like Syria. If China does not change course, Syria is it's future.

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