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Apple removes VPN apps in China as Russia's Putin puts in the boot with VPN banlaw

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Big Brother

The future is almost here

Prepare good citizens, prepare!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The future is almost here

Roger that.

I've got some Vaseline to ease the transition.

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Re: The future is almost here

I guess the UK government will soon follow.. not that they have something else to do..

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WTF?

Re: The future is almost here

You mean using VPNs hidden within http & https with proxies & redirects?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The future is almost here

The banning of VPNs is just one of many steps towards the ultimate goal - where every single user of the internet will need to authenticate, because of whatever reasons government can think of. Be it to reduce hate on the internet, for our 'safety', usual excuses.

When I say authenticate, it could be through a national ID card, RFID chip implant, biometrics, etc. Baby steps are already being taken as we speak to ensure all government property (i.e., you), has some sort of government ID stamped on it.

You see, government allow various problems to grow, they then await the screams of 'please do something' from the serfs, and they then come up with 'solutions' such as this. Why do you think hate speech is allowed to proliferate, including illegal material? It could quite easily be stopped.. but why do that when the problems help to support the agenda of government?

Mark my words.

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Re: The future is almost here

IOW, a Stateful Internet. I'm surprised they haven't taken that step yet.

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Re: Vaseline

How's that compare to Crisco?

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Re: Vaseline

Not as tasty...

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Thorough

All this to stop Chinese from watching Justin Bieber and Korean soap operas!

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Coat

Re: Thorough

... and some people think that oppressive regimes are all bad.

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It's oppression...

...when they do it. When our government does it though, it will be for our safety.

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Unhappy

" It's oppression...when they do it. When our government does it though, it will be for our safety."

Funny, I think in Russia and China it's the other way round.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: It's oppression...

Well, when our government does it at least it's not to keep themselves in power artificially. Politicians in a democracy are going to lose their jobs at some point anyway, mostly to their great relief. Come to think about it, the basic definition of a democracy is a system where the national leaders can leave their jobs and retire quietly.

Politicians in a dictatorship use every trick in the book to keep their jobs as long as possible.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: It's oppression...

Well, when our government does it at least it's not to keep themselves in power artificially

LOL. How charmingly naïve.

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And businesses?

How are businesses supposed to operate in this environment? The users in the field can only get the corporate data they need through a VPN connection to the HQ...

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Re: And businesses?

What you'll find is that when this shit comes to the UK (and it will) that you'll need to have a license to use a VPN. That way firms can still use them unaffected while us normal Joe Soaps will be denied access to the technology.

This will only come about via law firms and other companies (stock traders etc) that have the financial clout and embarrassing photographs of MPs to push through such a thing.

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Re: And businesses?

Then they must entrust the State with access to their data or they don't operate in the country, period. No unsanctioned encryption will soon be the rule with treason charges against those who try to get around it with things like steganography (which they'll sanitize to minimize).

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LDS
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The danger of the "app stores"....

.... you're no longer free to install what you like unless you find a way to hack your device.

Yes, app stores are more "secure" - but what "secure" really mean in this context?

Also, don't expect corporations fight for your rights when their own business is at stake. Apple knew it could challenge the DOJ and FBI without issues, but also knows it can't challenge the Chinese politburo without being kicked out of the country.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The danger of the "app stores"....

"Also, don't expect corporations fight for your rights when their own business is at stake"

I'm not a fan of Apple by any stretch of the imagination, but in this instance I'm not sure how they can be blamed for this. You seem to be under a bit of a misconception. Just because something is your right in the country that you live in does not mean it is a right of a person living in another country.

The difference between the DOJ/FBI case and the China case is in the former Apple refusing to comply was not breaking any law. Apple maybe a large powerful company, but even they can't disobey laws just because they don't morally agree with them.

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Re: The danger of the "app stores"....

"Apple maybe a large powerful company, but even they can't disobey laws just because they don't morally agree with them."

Uber.

Although using Uber and morally in the same sentence might be a problem.

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Re: The danger of the "app stores"....

Uber's trying to wade into legal gray areas. However, in doing so so boldly, they're going to make the courts and legislatures start turning those gray areas black-and-white.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The danger of the "app stores"....

Apple knew it could challenge the DOJ and FBI without issues, but also knows it can't challenge the Chinese politburo without being kicked out of the country.

Different legal aspects. If China bans VPNs, that is at that point the law, and as a normal business, Apple (et al, by the way) don't have any option but follow it. When DoJ and FBI demanded data, that was a process with legal recourse which Apple took. If that had played out all the way to the end and Apple was told to comply it would no longer have an option either - assuming that what was asked was technically possible.

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Re: The danger of the "app stores"....

"but even they can't disobey laws just because they don't morally agree with them."

No but they can pull out.

Morals have a price.

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Re: The danger of the "app stores"....

China has nearly two billion people. Morals have a price, and to a business, that price can be too high, especially when you have investors to please (remember, Apple is publicly traded).

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Timing

They always increase censorship before the National Congress. Nevertheless, I note that comments from some Chinese people indicate that they are not really having a huge problem with VPN availability even at this time. This is probably more of a news opportunity for western news.

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Anonymous Coward

And how would this be enforced in the west?

The genie is already well out of the bottle. Packet inspection?

People aren't just going to stop using VPNs and/or encryption because their governments tell them to.

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Re: And how would this be enforced in the west?

They will if they risk being charged with terrorism or worse. As for packet inspection, if all unsanctioned encryption is banned, then they just have to inspect anything they can't parse or decrypt. Most Web content can then be sanitized to reduce the odds and rate of stego.

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Big Brother

Thank God I live in the UK where we don't have a government that interferes with the legal websites we as citizens are allowed to visit...

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Big Brother

"Thank God I live in the UK where we don't have a government that interferes with the legal websites we as citizens are allowed to visit...Yet"

There, FTFY!

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Fair amount of satire in @Velves post there I believe..

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Anonymous Coward

"Thank God I live in the UK where we don't have a government that interf

FTFTFY

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MJI
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Think when you vote

Do not vote for extremist parties.

They keep trying though, but May seems to be suceeding unfortunately.

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Did anybody see the little troll from UK Gov sitting in the corner making notes, soon be rolled out in good old blighty under the disguise of anti-terror laws. Funny how multiple countries clamping down on internet freedoms, just makes you think this NWO stuff may have legs ??

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Gimp

To authoritarians (of whatever stripe they call themselves) there is only one true enemy

The people.

Saying things (not necessarily about them) authoritarians cannot hear.

Thinking things (not necessarily about them) authoritarians cannot know.

Doing things (not necessarily against them) authoritarians cannot stop.

If their behavior was not so draconian would it not be simply pathetic? The only real "terrorist" of such people is the one inside their own heads. As it was for Stalin, Putin and May.

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Anonymous Coward

Great

But does an SSH tunnel qualify as a VPN?

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Re: Great

Probably. Just assume they're trying to wipe out all unsanctioned encryption wholesale. Once they do that, they'll be working on stego sanitizers next.

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How far will this go ???

Hi,

So we have IPA, and the potential to ban VPN's in the UK in the future.

What else will be the next restriction on the people ?.

The cat and mouse being played out indicates that the bad people will always find a way to elude monitoring.

The mindset of those implementing the changes seems to be more warped as time progresses. It seems to be progressing to a situation where monitoring/restrictions are implemented at any cost (financial, freedom etc).

So we may have banning of VPN's, but recent articles in periodicals show you how to implement VPN's (Linux Format). So what is next, banning of such texts, and VPN's technology and know how becomes a crime if you do not have a legitimate use (business etc) to use, or even read about VPN's ?

Regards,

Shadmeister.

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Re: How far will this go ???

"So what is next, banning of such texts"

In the U.K. It's been illegal for a couple of decades now to publish instructions on how to circumvent many of our computer misuse laws. Yes you read that right, it's illegal to inform people how not to break the law, if the objective was originally to break the law.

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Re: How far will this go ???

Hi,

Does make you wonder if having such texts (VPN) in the future, will be prosecutable under intention to commit a criminal act. All because some people want privacy.

Regards,

Shadmeister.

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Re: How far will this go ???

Hmm... Aqua Marina... exactly how does Reichfurher May and company plan to do anything if I were to, oh, create a few PDFs or RTFs or EPUBs of books containing such instructions and email them to people in the UK? Or placing them on a FTP or even a web site? Or just parking them on a USB thub drive and putting it in my pocket as I stroll past Customs? Is she really going to scan all inbound email, troll every site everywhere on the Internet, scan every thumb drive in every pocket, suitcase, or whatever? Really? Because I can see a few ways to have a lot of fun with them while remaining completely within the law.

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Re: How far will this go ???

Why not give some examples, then? Because although you may be within the confines of SOME laws, you may find yourself running afoul of OTHER laws.

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Coat

What's it like to live in a country wth no free speech?

"Mustn't grumble"

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Re: What's it like to live in a country wth no free speech?

How is this gem by @Roj Blake not +600?

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Big Brother

Re: What's it like to live in a country wth no free speech? ""Mustn't grumble""

Citizen

Your grumbles are important to us.

They will make your sentencing much quicker.

Regards

Big Brother.

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