Green Tsunami Released to Burst Green Dam
ATLANTA, June 16, 2009 – A few days after China announced the mandatory installation of censorship software on every PC sold in China, a leading anti-censorship organization has released software to defeat it.
Global Internet Freedom (GIF; http://www.internetfreedom.org), a consortium formed by several technology companies specialized in circumventing political censorship on the internet by repressive regimes, announced today its release of “Green Tsunami,” software designed for Chinese users to detect, disable or remove “Green Dam.”
Green Tsunami gives users options to temporarily disable the monitoring of “Green Dam,” or to completely purge it from their computers.
The censorship software, Green Dam, is developed with the support of the Chinese government, which then announced the mandatory installation program for the alleged purpose of blocking pornography and other “harmful” content, and protecting the youth.
GIF’s analysis of the software reveals, however, that Green Dam is designed to filter a much wider range of content than pornography, based on long blacklists including keywords such as “Anti-China Congressmen,” “Falun Gong,” and even “Argentina.”
In addition, Green Dam has built-in functions designed specifically to cripple FreeGate and UltraSurf, two of the most popular anti-censorship software tools developed and supported by GIF. Chinese users have used both to circumvent the filtering and blocking by the Chinese national gateways, the so-called “Great Firewall.” The censorship software is also engineered to be very difficult for average users to uninstall it.
GIF has developed counter-measures to evade and defeat Green Dam, and is releasing Green Tsunami with either FreeGate or UltraSurf built in, so GIF’s anti-censorship software users will largely be unaffected by China’s new move.
“One of the great privileges of my life has been to watch the GIF developers play an instrumental role in causing Chinese regime to move from efforts at national gateway monitoring and censorship to their recent, desperate resort to an overtly Big Brother system requiring the installation of bugs on every computer in China,” said Michael Horowitz, a fellow at the Hudson Institute in Washington, D. C. and advisor to GIF.
“The disabling of the regime’s ‘Green Dam’ bug system represents an important step towards shattering the internet firewalls which 21st century dictatorships must maintain in order to stay in power. Today’s ‘Green Tsunami’ development is of as much importance to the people of Iran, Burma, Cuba, Vietnam, and Syria as it is to the people of China.” Mr. Horowitz said.
About The Global Internet Freedom Consortium
Formed in 2006, the Consortium is an alliance of several leading organizations in developing and deploying anti-censorship technologies for Internet users in oppressive regimes. The Consortium partners have contributed significantly to the advancement of information freedom in China. The anti-censorship technologies the Consortium members developed have enabled Internet users in China to securely visit websites blocked by the Chinese government, such as those of Voice of America and Radio Free Asia. For more information, visit http://www.internetfreedom.org.
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