July 30, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law prohibiting Russian citizens from visiting banned sites, a week earlier this law was passed in the State Duma. From November 1, 2017, all anonymizers (VPN, Tor, proxies, etc.) will be considered illegal in Russia (with reservations).
At the moment, the law prohibits access to already banned content using a VPN or other means. But the use of VPN services is not prohibited.
According to representatives of the Kremlin, “law-abiding citizens have nothing to fear” and “this law will serve as another way to recall the inadmissibility of visiting sites that were restricted by the decision of the Russian government.” Among these prohibited resources are religious extremist sites, and sites promoting drug use, suicide, as well as pornographic materials and more.
And although the Kremlin separately assured everyone that nobody forbids using VPN services for purposes permitted by law, we can only wait and believe that this law, when it comes into force, will not bring unpleasant surprises.
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This is not new for Russia
And this is not the first time that VPN services have problems with Russian laws. So, in July 2016, the PIA VPN service ceased to work in Russia due to the entry into force of the law, according to which it had to store the traffic logs of Russian users for a very long time. Other VPN services did not leave the country, however, they made more than serious changes to their encryption systems. To protect the confidentiality of the data of their users from Russia it is done.
Most likely, this new prohibition law will have similar consequences, limiting the capabilities of Internet providers. It is possible that future Russian users of VPN services will soon have access to the blocked site.
It is still not clear how much harm this law will cause to the digital world and Internet privacy in particular. However, it’s already clear that this law inflicts a severe and severe blow on everyone: VPN service users who need a secure channel for exchanging information or viewing entertainment content, and hundreds of companies for which VPN is part of the network infrastructure, have come under fire. providing remote employees access to work files.
China still leads
However, Russia is far from the only country that has been noted in the field of blocking VPN services. Just a few days earlier, Apple cleaned up the Chinese branch of the App Store from many VPN service clients. According to company representatives, this was done in order to comply with Chinese law. Now getting around the Great Chinese Firewall will become even more difficult.
Whatever the reasons behind these decisions, one thing is clear – the Internet has just become even less free. It is terrible that the governments of these countries decided to use such measures to combat, in fact, windmills (more precisely, with the possibility of access to illegal content). It is terrible that instead of fighting the root cause of problems, valuable, useful technology is prohibited.
Moreover, it is difficult not to notice that these decisions are politicized through and through. In March 2018, presidential elections will be held in Russia. There is a very big chance that the adopted law will be overgrown with amendments and additions only in order to protect the political interests of the You-Know-Who and put sticks in the wheels of the opposition and the Other-you-know-whom.
As for China, here, alas, there is nothing unusual. “Restrict and prohibit” has been the motto of the Chinese government since the advent of VPN technology. This, however, is not surprising. It is with the help of a VPN that you can bypass the Great Chinese Firewall. Which blocks most of the network.
How to bypass the lock?
Of course, this new law will still bring some VPN services a lot of headaches. Nevertheless, the laws on anonymizers in general and VPN, in particular, are full, figuratively speaking, of holes. Many VPN services that work secretly enough will continue to provide their services, allowing you to bypass even the most-worst scares.
At first (a week or two) it will be difficult, but then a method will surely appear. That will allow you to efficiently and effectively bypass new crazy prohibitions.
If you live in Russia or intend to go there in the near future, then it would be best to subscribe to a VPN service while it is still possible without any extra effort. There is still a lot of time before this law comes into force, so a little initiative and action will only benefit you.
The same applies to China. There, of course, the law prohibits the use of VPN services, and the services themselves are not many there. But in the end, not so many IP addresses of VPN services fall into the Chinese blacklists. In other words, if you are well prepared, you can circumvent these restrictions and work on the network without problems.
Choosing the best VPN service is the key to success. Bypassing massive government blockages is a big deal. Therefore, you need such a VPN service that will never let you down, no matter how censorship rages around. In order not to be mistaken with the choice, be sure to check out our list of recommended VPN services