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Internet regulations and censorship

The goal of this presentation is to describe current worldwide trends in Internet regulations and censorship including the way how to cope with that using anonymization networks

Pavol Luptak

on 26 November 2014

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Transcript of Internet regulations and censorship


"Official" reasons for censorship
"Unofficial" reasons for censorship
Censorship in the world
Censorship in the EU
Internet regulations in Czech Republic and Slovakia
Protecting your digital privacy & anonymization
Cryptoanarchy and absolute freedom of speech
Four Horsemen of the Information Apocalypse:

1. terrorists
2. drug dealers
3. kidnappers
4. child pornographers

Term coined by Timothy C. May in 1988
True reasons for censorship:

Everybody wants to be a
politician who cares
Better monitoring and control of all citizens
Efficient tool to preserve government's power and fight with their political opposition
Enemies of the Internet:
Bahrain, Belarus, Burma, China, Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan

Censorship is focused on Human rights, Religion and Pornography web pages.
Government directly controls international connectivity.
Censorship in the developed countries:
Australia, Denmark, France, Netherlands, Russia, United Kingdom, ....

Censorship is focused on torrent portals, child pornography, "extremist" or homosexual websites.

Censorship is ALWAYS extending over time.
Countries blocking access to the Pirate Bay (and some other torrent portals):

Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Greece, India, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Malaysia, Netherlands, Norway, People's Republic of China, Sweden, United Kingdom.

Even running proxy servers directing to the Pirate Bay became illegal or were shut down in the Netherlands and the UK
The salami slicing of free speech - UK example
Firstly, access to the Pirate Bay and other torrent portals were blocked
Then opt-in/opt-out access to porn / sexual web pages was approved
Now Cameron (UK prime minister) approved blocking access to some "extremist" websites
And there is also a strong pressure of the UK government to censor/stop the Guardian newspapers because of Snowden leaks
Oh, we already have a national blocking infrastructure! Let's use it!

So what will be next?

Blocking political opposition and anti-government web-sites.
Russians or Iranians know this scenario pretty well :-(
Situation in Czech republic and Slovakia

Still no Internet censorship (but it was almost approved in both countries - online gambling censorship law proposal)
Most ISP providers (mobile operators) use non-transparent IWF blacklists
Data Retention law (in 2011 it was declared in Czech Republic to be unconstitutional, but it was reintroduced in 2012)
In 2014 EU Court of Justice invalidated this law
Mobile operators CANNOT provide end-to-end encrypted calls (using e.g. ZRTP) for their customers (because of impossibility of legal interception)
Data Retention Law

The Directive requires Member States to ensure that communications providers must retain, for a period of between 6 months and 2 years, necessary data as specified in the Directive:
to trace and identify the source of a communication
to trace and identify the destination of a communication
to identify the date, time and duration of a communication
to identify the type of communication
to identify the communication device
to identify the location of mobile communication equipment
Do you think the government should have a right to put a camera in every room or place where people communicate?

If not....
Why do you think it should have the right to gather and intercept the online or mobile communication of all innocent people?
(Yes, terrorists and criminals use end-to-end secure calls and PGP).
How to protect our freedom?
Use strong encryption!
Always use full disk encryption that makes unlawful forensic analysis impossible
Use PGP/SMIME for email communication encryption instead of plaintext emails
Use secure VoIP (SIP/TLS + SRTP/ZRTP) for voice communication instead of GSM/3G which is broken and intercepted by the government
Use Jabber/SSL + OTR/PGP for secure instant communication
Use encrypted communication (SSL based services like HTTPS, IMAPS, OpenVPN, SSH, ..)
Do not use untrusted proprietary 3rd party services like Skype, ICQ, Facebook, Gmail (use only with email encryption) for sending/receiving of any sensitive information
Use anonymization!
Never reveal your true identity
Use anonymization networks (Tor, I2P, Freenet, GNUNet) that provides you strong anonymity based on asymmetrical cryptography
Run your own anonymous website / blog using Tor Hidden Services
Protect your client-side

Sanitize your browser fingerprint
Use Firefox/Opera/IE/Safari Private Browsing, Chrome Incognito mode
Block active clientside applets (Java, .NET, Flash, Silverlight, ...)
Disable permanent cookies, history/content caching
Use privacy aware Linux distribution, e.g. Tails
Use Bitcoins or other pseudo-anonymous digital currency!

Pseudo-anonymous peer-to-peer distributed and decentralized currency with almost no possibility to shutdown
Probably the only way you can make anonymous legal payments
Be aware of deanonymization attacks
If you really care about anonymous transactions, check ZeroCoin & DarkCoin
Strong encryption and anonymity makes "plausible deniability" possible

Plausible deniability is a legal concept. It refers to lack of evidence proving an allegation.
If your opponent lacks incontrovertible proof (evidence) of their allegation, you can "plausibly deny" the allegation even though it may be true.

Thanks to Tor hidden services it should be impossible to know the actual identity of anyone in cipherspace.
Therefore, it would be impossible to impose any censorship and to enforce any law
Free, secure and anonymous communication and Internet access from all censorship countries (sometimes obfsproxy is needed)
Bypassing EU data retention law
Thanks and enjoy your Internet freedom
Contact me!
If you still can.
Snowden leaks revealed regular misuse of spying and censorship:

NSA spies on people's porn habits
NSA has full access to geo-location data of millions mobile devices worldwide
NSA has full access to all SWIFT payments (even performed in the EU)
NSA has full access to millions contact lists and related social groups
Do this just NOW:
Encrypt your disk, your voice and your text phone communication!
Install full-disk encryption on all your devices (dm-crypt/LUKS, DiskCryptor, VeraCrypt, Bitlocker) including your Android phone
If you use Android, install and use RedPhone & TextSecure
If you use iOS, install and use Signal Private Messenger
Who Am I?
Cryptoanarchist and voluntaryist focused on technology and society hacking
Owner of IT security company Nethemba s.r.o. and Nethemba GmbH focused on penetration tests & ethical hacking
Co-founder of Progressbar and Parallel Polis hackerspaces in Bratislava and Prague
'proud member' of Ztohoven & hedonist :-)
Full transcript