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Government Censorship Privacy The Internet United Kingdom Wikipedia Your Rights Online

Jimmy Wales Threatens To Obstruct UK Government Snooping 198

judgecorp writes "Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales has threatened to encrypt communications between Wikipedia and UK users in order to frustrate the proposed Communications Bill, known as the Snooper's Charter, which would give the UK government the right to routinely track citizens' web and phone use. Wales was addressing the committee which is scrutinising the Bill before it is considered by Parliament."
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Jimmy Wales Threatens To Obstruct UK Government Snooping

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  • Why not just do it? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by MisterP ( 156738 ) on Thursday September 06, 2012 @10:18AM (#41247491)

    I understand that wikipedia is a non-profit and has limited resources, but why not just do it? This doesn't seem like a radical stance at all. This should be on their roadmap. Given wikipedia history of taking sides on issues like this, they should be pioneers in doing this sort of thing.

    Plain text HTTP is on its way to becoming a legacy protocol.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 06, 2012 @10:19AM (#41247499)

    From what I read of TFA, it doesn't look like Jimbo is actually making a threat. He's just saying "Your idea sucks because I, and any competent server operator, could bypass it in 30 seconds."

  • by xded ( 1046894 ) on Thursday September 06, 2012 @10:29AM (#41247679)
    Given the traffic volume experienced by Wikipedia every day, switching the entire UK (or worldwide) traffic to HTTPS would represent a significant hit on the servers CPU load if they're not using cryptographically capable hardware (and maybe even if they do, however IANANE and I'm not sure how this could work with load balancing).
  • by Cajun Hell ( 725246 ) on Thursday September 06, 2012 @10:52AM (#41248017) Homepage Journal
    I totally agree with the idea that he should just go ahead and do it, but

    Most decent load balancers support hardware-SSL these days.

    That's gotta at least increase the wattage. Nothing is ever really free though in 2012 you'd think crypto would be dirt cheap. If your 20 year old computer can do it...

  • by zlives ( 2009072 ) on Thursday September 06, 2012 @12:34PM (#41249565)

    people with more knowledge please correct me...

    from my understanding your ISP can use a transparent proxy (so without your knowledge, or actually make you use a web proxy) and be able to see your data even in SSL. This is how websense gateway product works. they actually use it as a selling point to be able to scan ssl based web email that may include confidential documents as attachments.

I've noticed several design suggestions in your code.