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The Internet Censorship Cloud Communications Government Japan Your Rights Online

Users Flock To Firewall-Busting Thesis Project 91

itwbennett writes "Daiyuu Nobori, a Ph.D. student at Japan's Tsukuba University designed 'VPN Gate' to help individuals in countries that restrict Internet use circumvent government firewalls. The service, which has drawn 77,000 users since its launch last Friday, encourages members of the public to set up VPN servers and offer free connections to individual users, aiming to make the technology more accessible. Nobori had originally planned to host the service on his university's servers, but they have been down recently so he switched it to the Windows Azure cloud platform. He has spent about US$9,000 keeping it up so far."
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Users Flock To Firewall-Busting Thesis Project

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  • by bluefoxlucid ( 723572 ) on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @02:12PM (#43161769) Homepage Journal

    Yes it's called "Potential Problem Analysis" and it's what's done by people who actually know how to get things done and not find themselves falling down a hole with no idea what went wrong or how they're going to get out of it.

    Let's try Tor:

    Supply a list of Tor connection nodes at

    Potential Problem Analysis: "What if China blocks those 4 IP addresses on their firewall?"

    You: "Stop being morons, stuff like this is still useful." (6 months later) "Oh, shit. Well uh, start distributing updates. Oh, they're getting shot down too. Uh."

    Intelligent people: "Hmm, that could be a problem. China probably will do that when they see the circumvention, so Likelihood is 'HIGH'. It'd be crippling, so Severity is 'HIGH'. We should make it part of the protocol to be able to trade information about the network, but not force synchronization of full information, that way the network won't have desync issues and it also will be harder to insert nodes on the network to quickly collect a list of all nodes and block them all."

    Another Potential Problem, in this case, is that the VPNs are direct and traceable--the country may leave the list of VPNs accessible, track it, and track connections to those addresses. Then they know who the offenders are. In that case, this project would still be useful: Iran could find the Blasphemers, come to their house at night, and behead them.

  • Re:Windows Azure? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday March 13, 2013 @03:00PM (#43162279)

    Maybe. And if they are, good for them.

Some people carve careers, others chisel them.