Free Expression Online
Studies of Internet filtering, network interference, and other technologies and practices that impact freedom of expression online.
Featured in Free Expression Online
An Analysis of the International Code of Conduct for Information Security
As the United Nations General Assembly begins its milestone 70th session, international digital security is high on the agenda. One starting point for discussion is likely to be the International Code of Conduct for Information Security (the “Code”). This analysis explores how the Code has developed over time, impetus behind the changes made, and the potential impact of the Code on international human rights law and its application. It is accompanied by an interactive comparison of the 2015 and 2011 versions of the Code.
Every Rose Has Its Thorn: Censorship and Surveillance on Social Video Platforms in China
In this paper presented at USENIX FOCI 2015 we use reverse engineering to provide a view into how keyword censorship operates on four popular social video platforms in China: YY, 9158, Sina Show, and GuaGua. We also find keyword surveillance capabilities on YY. Our findings show inconsistencies in the implementation of censorship and the keyword lists used to trigger censorship events between the platforms we analyzed. We reveal a range of targeted content including criticism of the government and collective action. These results provide evidence that there is no monolithic set of rules that govern how information controls are implemented in China.
Politics, Rumors, and Ambiguity: Tracking Censorship on WeChat’s Public Accounts Platform
This report is an analysis of the types of content removed by WeChat on its public accounts (also known as “official accounts”) blogging platform.
China’s Great Cannon
This post describes our analysis of China’s “Great Cannon,” our term for an attack tool that we identify as separate from, but co-located with, the Great Firewall of China. The first known usage of the Great Cannon is in the recent large-scale novel DDoS attack on both GitHub and servers used by GreatFire.org.
Repository of censored and sensitive Chinese keywords: 13 lists, 9,054 terms
Contained are links to a set of 9,054 sensitive Chinese keywords, which combine 13 existing lists. These keywords may be helpful to researchers who are searching for censored content in Chinese or testing for network interference.