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Date: 2006-03-24

Weapons of Mass Oppression

Einer der Exportschlager der westlichen Welt ist nicht etwa Demokratie und Freiheit, sondern die Technik zur Filterung, Überwachung und Zensur des Internets und anderer Telekommunikationsnetze. Für diese Waffen gibt es keine Exportbeschränkungen, während eines der wenigen Technologien die eine freie Meinungsäußerung und demokratische Opposition erst erlauben als "dual-use" immer noch Beschränkungen unterworfen ist: Kryptographie.
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American technology companies are taking heat for helping China's government police the Internet. But this controversy extends well beyond China and the so- called Internet Gang of Four: Google, Yahoo, Cisco and Microsoft.
The initiative found that SmartFilter has been used by government-controlled monopoly providers in Kuwait, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates. It has also been used by state-controlled providers in Iran, even though American companies are banned from selling technology products there. (Secure Computing denies selling products or updates to Iran, which is probably using pirated versions.)

According to OpenNet, filtering products from another U.S. company, Websense, have also been used by a state-controlled service provider in Iran, ParsOnline. (...) The initiative also found that Myanmar, arguably the world's most repressive regime, uses censorware from the U.S. company Fortinet. And Singapore's government-controlled Singnet server uses filtering technology from SurfControl, a company that is now technically British but has its filtering operations headquarters in California.

One of America's most laudable national goals is the export of free speech and free information, yet U.S. companies are selling censorship
If American companies are already obligated to disclose the sale of bombs and guns to repressive regimes, why not censorware?


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edited by Mac Gyver
published on: 2006-03-24
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Big Brother Awards Austria
q/Talk 1.Juli: The Danger of Software Users Don't Control
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