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Users flock to Japan student's firewall-busting thesis project

Jay Alabaster | March 14, 2013
'VPN Gate,' designed by PhD student Daiyuu Nobori to circumvent government firewalls, has drawn 77,000 users in less than a week.

The service's public access logs show that the vast majority of connections are coming from China. He had friends at his university help him translate his materials into Chinese, but they asked that he not credit them by name for fear of repercussions.

Nobori said that while few people in countries like Japan feel threatened by government firewalls, he remains concerned. In Japan, police have publicized a plan to block access to a genre of sites that give advice on how to kill yourself, to cut down on the country's high suicide rate.

"It is probably acceptable to block the suicide sites, but you don't know what happens next. There is always a chance it will expand."

 

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