China Just Made VPNs Illegal for Internet Users
中國新規:網路使用者使用 VPN 是違法的


IN BRIEF
• To “strengthen cyberspace information security management,” China is banning the unapproved use of virtual private network (VPN) services until March 31, 2018.
• This ban further restricts Chinese citizens’ access to information at a time when such access is becoming a necessary facet of modern life.

摘要

為了加強網路空間的資訊安全管理,中國開始取締未經許可的 VPN ( virtual private network,虛擬私人網路 )的使用,一直持續到 2018 年三月三十一日。

當資訊的獲得在現代生活中成為必需的一個面向,中國卻限制中國民眾的資訊接收。

THE GREATER FIREWALL
更大的防火牆

China is notorious for blocking internet access to many of the world’s most popular websites, including Facebook, Youtube, and Twitter. It’s so bad that internet censorship in China has been humorously called the “Great Firewall.” And just like the historical landmark it was named after, the Great Firewall is being extended bit by bit. Now, according to a report by the South China Morning Post, state-sanctioned censorship is expanding to include special cable and virtual private network (VPN) services.

中國在限制網路存取方面惡名昭彰,他們限制民眾存取世界最知名的流行網站,保括臉書、 Youtube、Twitter。這樣的情形很糟糕,所以中國的網路存取審查被戲稱為「 防火長城 」( Great Firewall )。就像這個幽默稱號的來源,著名的歷史地標長城一樣,防火長城被一點一點地漸漸擴展。現在,根據南華早報( South China Morning Post )的報導,中國批准的審查現在進一步擴展,包含了特種電纜和 VPN 服務。

China Daily Mail
圖片來源:China Daily Mail ( 每日郵報 )

Most mainland Chinese citizens bypass the government’s ban on the world’s most popular websites using VPNs, but now, doing so could be illegal. This ban on unapproved VPN usage is being called a 14-month-long “clean up” of the nation’s internet connections in preparation for a reshuffle of leadership in China’s congress.
“China’s internet connection service market … has signs of disordered development that require urgent regulation and governance,” according to a notice released Sunday by China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. The new ruling is effective immediately and would last until March 31, 2018, to “strengthen cyberspace information security management.”
Major VPN services, such as Vypr and Express, are aware of the new situation, with Vypr already working on ways around it. That might be difficult, though, as the government remains vague about how it will implement these new rules, according to The Washington Post.

多數中國大陸民眾使用 VPN 來避過中國政府的限制,好前往世界最流行的網站,但是現在,這樣做是犯法的。對未經許可的 VPN 使用的禁令將持續 14 個月,「 清掃 」中國的網路連結,為中國國會的改組、權力的轉移做準備。

中華人民共和國工業和信息化部 ( China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology )在星期天發表了一則聲明:「 中國的網路連結服務市場… 有混亂發展的徵兆,需要緊急的規範和管理。」新的規定立即生效,並且會持續到 2018 年三月三十一日,為了「 加強網路空間資訊安全管理 」。

華盛頓郵報( The Washington Post )報導:「 主要的 VPN 服務,像是 Vypr 和 Express,已經得知這個新的狀況, Vypr 已經著手找出應對方法,但那可能會很困難,當政府不明確表示這些新規定的執行方式的時候。 」

THE INTERNET AND GLOBAL COMMUNICATIONS
網路和全球通信
Though not the first time the country has cracked down on VPNs, this new measure represents a more stringent China when it comes to its citizens’ online privacy and access to information. In a modern, globalized world where access to the internet is considered by many a necessity, China continues to uphold a rather backward stance.
There’s no doubt about how access to the internet — or, more specifically, access to information — can help people form opinions. And, indeed, it has done so in the past. For instance, many believe that the internet and social media played a very important role in the Arab Spring. The recent Syrian crisis is another example. More recently still, information on the internet has helped shape the opinions of many Americans — for better or worse — in the recently concluded elections. Information that comes through the internet is so influential that the proliferation of “fake news” has become an alarming phenomenon, so much so that Facebook was compelled to do something about it.

雖然這不是中國第一次打擊 VPN,但這個新規定呈現出一個更嚴厲的中國,因為這和中國民眾的網路隱私和獲得訊息的權力相關。在一個現代化、全球化的世界,與網路的連結是很必要的,中國卻一直堅持一個倒退的立場。

與網路連結,或是更準確的說,與資訊連結,可以幫助人建立自己的想法。這在過去的時間中早已是不用懷疑的事實。例如,許多人相信網路和社交媒體在阿拉伯之春( Arab Spring )中扮演重要角色。最近的敘利亞危機( Syrian crisis )又是另一個例子。再舉一個更近期的例子,網路的資訊幫助許多美國人在更好的或更壞的面向上,釐清他們對於最近落幕的大選的想法,網路的資訊很有影響力,假新聞的增加成為一個令人擔心的現象,所以臉書被要求對此採取行動。

The internet has become essential to modern life, and there are various efforts to bring access to it to even the most remote parts of the world. The United Nations Human Rights Council has definitively condemned state-sponsored meddling with internet access. Granted, it does take some form of “policing” — usually personal vigilance — to sift through what is and isn’t factual information, but shouldn’t that policing be left to the individual? Besides, it’s doubtful that China is blocking VPNs for the sake of saving its citizens from fake news.
The internet, for all its imperfections, has become an essential avenue for freedom of expression. A state should be concerned with safeguarding the online privacy of its citizens, not curbing their access to this valuable tool of the information age.

網路對現代生活來說是必要的,它的普及耗費許多努力,讓它擴展到世界最遙遠的一端。聯合國人權理事會( United Nations Human Rights Council )對於國家干預網路使用抱持絕對譴責的態度。的確有些人對網路採取「 維安 」的行爲,但是那通常是因個人的警覺心引起,用來篩選假訊息和真訊息,但是這種維安不是應該由個人自己決定要不要執行嗎?而且,中國對 VPN 的封鎖是不是為了讓它的民眾不被假新聞騷擾,這令人懷疑。

雖然網路不是完美的,但是它已經是自由和言論的大道。一個國家應該關心它的國民在網路隱私方面的安全,而不是在這個資訊時代限制他們使用這個寶貴的工具。

來源: futurism