Steven J. Murdoch: Anonymity and censorship resistance, Internet censorship and how it is resisted

The extent of Internet censorship is rapidly increasing, and along with it interest in censorship resistance technologies. This talk will discuss some of the motivations and targets of censorship, and describe the technologies and social controls used to implement blocking. Anonymous communication systems will then be introduced, as well as how they can help provide censorship resistance. One such system, Tor, will be described in detail, and an overview of the operation of two other systems – Freenet and Psiphon – will be given.

Internet censorship and how it is resisted

A growing number of countries and non-state entities are deploying mechanisms to block content and services on the Internet. Motivations include maintaining moral values and public order, reducing political dissent, constraining freedom of expression and practice of religion, as well as enforcing compliance with local laws. This talk will describe the systems which implement such blocking, both technological and social. It will then look at censorship circumvention methods, the effectiveness of these techniques, and ethical issues raised by both censorship and censorship circumvention.