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Russian Internet is still overly censored

Jan 13, 2019 | 2 minutes read

I recently went to Russia for 2 weeks to see family, friends, and celebrate winter holidays. During my relatively short visit I didn’t browse the web much, and didn’t intentionally look for blocked websites, but still recieved RSTs from the national firewall while visiting

  • relicabackup.org
  • fra1.dl.elementary.io
  • noncombatant.org
  • www.bbc.com

All those sites, including bbc.com, were blocked unintentionally. This have happened because Roskomnadzor started carpet blocking IP addresses in order to interfere with Telegram, eventually blocking over 16 million addresses, and, presumably, sites above are on the list. One would think that over 9 months Roskomnadzor would realize the amount of damage done and revert it, but no such luck. Ironically, Telegram worked flawlessly the whole time.

Should I even bother discussing how idiotic, counter-productive, destructive and ineffective blocking is? I am too tired to go over this yet another time, so I won’t, but the conclusion is clear: if you live in a country that is busy destroying the Internet, you should get familiar with anti-censorship tools. Even creator of Great Firewall of China uses it. If you’re technical, I shamelessly suggest that you use my forwardproxy plugin for Caddy, or download Psiphon.

EDIT: Ok, I didn’t want to talk about why blockings are dumb, but I can’t not mention this: blocking of elementaryOS servers disrupted automatic updates, which are exteremely imporant for, you know, not getting hacked with a publicly known exploit by a 13 year old script kiddie. Great job compromising security of innocent people, you incompetent pricks. 👍