How Does Online Censorship Work: A Brief Analysis

Online censorship

The internet was originally created in order to make communication with people more convenient and share a lot of information free. It emerged as a free learning platform for the entire globe. However, with every passing day, the scenario has changed completely.

Internet usage also depends on the country where you reside. For example, if you are living in China, you can not access the ipiratebay for downloading free movies, software, and games. However, if you are in Switzerland, you can access those sites without any restrictions.

Several restrictions have been applied in recent years. You might have also heard of online censorship or internet censorship. Do you know anything about it?

No!

Do not worry; here in this article, we will talk about online censorship. We will start with the basics of online censorship and then will shift to how the whole thing actually works.

What Is Internet Or Online Censorship?

We are starting this article about online censorship from the absolute basics. Let’s first find out what internet censorship actually is.

Online censorship is nothing but the particular practice of suppressing or prohibiting some specific content pieces, which are available on the online world or on the internet.

What Is Blocked?

The content pieces which are blocked can be anything. They are as follows.

  • Foreign websites.
  • News media.
  • Social media.
  • Torrenting.
  • Porn.

How Does Online Censorship Work?

When it comes to online censorship, there are several methods available to utilize. However, the common thing is that in all of the methods, some content pieces are being restricted.

1: DNS Tampering

It is a special technique, which is used by hackers in order for accessing DNS records. After gaining success, the hackers can make any type of changes along with allowing themselves into the whole network.

This particular thing might lead to viruses and malware, along with collecting information pieces specifically for identity theft.

2: Blocking IP Address

IP address blocking is one of the most common methods of online censorship. IP address or the internet protocol address is a unique number that tells your computer where to actually go as soon as you type in the domain name.

On an ad-hoc basis, some particular IP addresses can be blocked. Regions also play a huge role in blocking this IP address, which is known as geo-blocking or geo-location.

3: Filtering Keywords And Packets

Keyword filters are usually used by parents. It is nothing but blocking some particular keywords either manually or automatically. There are also some firewalls, which make decisions on the basis of some other factors instead of blocking by keywords or domain name.

Those factors are here.

  • Destination IP address.
  • Source IP address.
  • Network address.
  • Ports.
  • Protocols.

Rather than firewall filtering, particularly for malicious traffic, it usually does with the specific most antivirus software. All these filters are entirely based on the destination and source IP address.

4: Traffic Shaping

It is also popular or known as traffic shaping. It is actually a way of managing bandwidth, which lets certain applications perform in a better way than others. This way, the prioritized apps will run with not a single problem.

However, the apps, which are not prioritized will be particularly throttled or slowed down. So, these are all about traffic shaping.

5: Port Number Blacklisting

Now come to the last point, port number blacklisting. This method is used when an ISP or internet service provider blocks the traffic on the basis of its port number solely or its transport protocol, ignoring IP addresses.

This way, the entire application can be blocked, and not just certain websites.

Final Talks

Online censorship is what we are dealing with on a regular basis. There are several protests going on in order to liberalize the usage of the internet for everyone and anyone. There are also some countries, whose government completely keeps track of everything that can be accessed on the internet.

What do you think about it? Share your thoughts; our readers will love to read that.

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About the Author: John Watson

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