How to Bypass the Great Chinese Firewall

If you have ever traveled to China, you have probably experienced the firewall. You may have tried to access your favorite websites, only to find that access was denied. Checking your email or posting your travel photos online isn’t possible there.

We can explain what the firewall is and how you can get around it.

What is the Great Firewall?

The Great Firewall, as it has become known, is basically the internet censorship program that the Chinese government has put in place. The main reason for this is that the Chinese government wanted to prevent western influence in China.

In recent years, censorship has gotten stronger. This means that internet access has become extremely restricted. Websites such as Google, Facebook, and YouTube cannot be accessed. Even certain platforms such as Skype and WhatsApp have been banned. It is so strict, that even some tech companies have been downsizing their operations in mainland China due to strict data privacy laws, according to ABC News.

How to Bypass It?

The easiest way to bypass the firewall is with a VPN. This is a software that can “spoof” or change your location and encrypt your data. So if someone surfing the web in China can set their location to Australia and bypass the restrictions. You will have to do your own research to find out which VPN is best suited for you. You can check Surfshark pricing, but shop around to find the one that best fits your budget.

How Does China Enforce it?

Many people think that maybe the government doesn’t look after these restrictions. That could not be further from the truth. There are many systems in place to make sure these restrictions are enforced. One reporter was even jailed for 4 years for documenting her life during COVID-19 on Twitter and YouTube, both of which are banned, according to CNN.

  • Technology

The first and most obvious way that the government enforces the restrictions is through technology. This means that they restrict certain URLs, disrupt your servers, and even block some VPNs.

  • Company Laws

Another way that the restrictions are enforced is through laws. There are laws that have been put in place that make companies responsible for all of their online content. This means that on the platforms that are allowed in China, companies must make sure none of the content on them contains forbidden topics. If there are, then those companies are likely to be fined or even shut down.

  • Citizen Help

Besides using laws and technology to enforce restrictions, China is also making use of its citizens. Thousands of citizens are hired by the Chinese government to edit and monitor online content, and to report violations to the authorities. Many of these activities are also monitored by AI due to advances in technology.

In conclusion

There are many restrictions in place with the Great Firewall. This can make it very difficult to stay up to date with current events while you are in China. Now you have an idea of what it is and how you can get around it, no matter how long you stay.

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