Tag - censorship

Ghostie’s weekly digest: the Germany Facebook ban and more
Unblocking websites and apps is still a big problem in 2016
World Day Against Cyber Censorship
Happy Blocking 2014

Ghostie’s weekly digest: the Germany Facebook ban and more

You win some, you lose some, they say. Well, this could sum up the week just perfectly on the online privacy front, since we had both a victory when Germany ordered Facebook to stop collecting data from WhatsApp users and an important step back, when Swiss voters decided to give new surveillance powers to authorities.


German privacy regulator orders Facebook to stop collecting data from users; Facebook to appeal

The Hamburg Commissioner for Data Protection and Freedom of Information said Facebook was infringing the data protection law and had not obtained effective approval from WhatsApp’s 35 million users in Germany, according to Reuters.

“After the acquisition of WhatsApp by Facebook two years ago, both parties have publicly assured that data will not be shared between them,” commissioner Johannes Caspar said in a statement.

Facebook is however not pleased with this decision and said it would appeal it.

Read More

Unblocking websites and apps is still a big problem in 2016

More than 2 billion people are living under online censorship

This is more than enough for CyberGhost team to continue our fight for the free internet in 2016 with even more power and over 650 servers worldwide.

But the news from the Web Index Report is not great: “The internet is less free, more unequal, and web users are at increasing risk of indiscriminate government surveillance”. In 2013, the report showed over 30% of Web Index countries were blocking politically or socially sensitive Web content to a moderate or extreme degree. In 2014 that figure went up to 38%.

Here is a good definition of content filtering, as a form of online censorship, from Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF):

“Many governments, companies, schools, and public access points use software to prevent Internet users from accessing certain websites and Internet services. This is called Internet filtering or blocking and is a form of censorship. Content filtering comes in different forms. Sometimes entire websites are blocked, sometimes individual web pages, and sometimes content is blocked based on keywords contained in it. One country might block Facebook entirely, or only block particular Facebook group pages—or it might block any page or web search with the words “falun gong” in it.”

Use CyberGhost to access safely censored content and protect your online privacy! Click to Tweet

And in recent days, other massively used apps, such as Whatsapp, have been blocked for short periods in Brazil and United Arab Emirates.

The current censorship situation around the world

Censorship map

At the same time, there is a fragile legal frame to support online freedom, with 84% of the countries having no effective laws and practices to protect the privacy of online communications. China is leading the top of countries blocking and filtering the web content. According to the same report, Uruguay allows its citizens the most online freedom.

When governments really cross the line, violating fundamental rights, like Turkey, during the “Big Ban” from March 2014, when the government blocked several web pages and access to YouTube, Twitter and Soundcloud,  international organizations and companies react strongly.  Several countries pressured Erdogan’s government to release the ban and CyberGhost offerd 30.000 Premium keys to Turkish citizens so they can use the internet unrestricted.

So there is hope. Out of the 45 Web Index countries with extensive constraints on speech, only seven (about 16%) seem to censor more heavily online than offline.

What can you do?

Use a trusted VPN to access safely the censored content and protect themselves and their online privacy.  In some cases, like the case of some journalists in conflict areas, even their life.

Here’s a video that explains how hiding your IP helps you unblock restricted websites and banned apps:

If you want to learn more on how to avoid being tracked online, read these 3 essential tips.

Does your government block access to an app or website? Enter here and tell us which ones and we will fight to help you unblock them with Cyberghost.

Does your government block access to an app or website? Use #CyberGhost to unblock them safely! Click to Tweet

So we just have to keep on reporting the abuses and demanding better laws to sustain online privacy for everybody, while using encrypted online connection.

World Day Against Cyber Censorship

CyberGhost  VPN Joins in the Global Protest Against Cyber Censorship and You Should Too

For the past years we have witnessed the general tendency towards an internet full of regulations and constraints from which the main initial perks and attributes like: freedom of speech, anonymity, and unlimited access to information have been slowly, but surely drained away.

The freedom of press, as well as users’ online privacy and security got caught in the middle between endless political debates and dangerous power games.

censorship Read More

Happy Blocking 2014

One of the best little presents Claire Perry and David Cameron welcome you with to 2014 is website blocking, coming to your home now and bringing you many reasonable Internet blockages like ‘Respect your Partner’, ‘Childline’ and other threats your wise government wants to protect your children’s souls from. Besides real offenses, of course, which no one doubts anyway. Now, does it make sense to protect a child from explicit material? Absolutely! Does it also make sense to implement a huge filter system right into the heart of the Internet – with or without best intentions? Well, besides the fact that the road to hell is paved with good intentions: Absolutely not!
Read More

© 2015 CyberGhost