13 June 2009

CN - OpenNet Initiative releases Green Dam evaluation

The news that China will begin requiring all computers sold in the country to include Internet filtering software has sparked waves of commentary on topics ranging from legal challenges to human rights issues to concerns about security and effectiveness.

The software, known as Green Dam Youth Escort, ostensibly protects children from harmful information online by filtering out sites that contain prohibited keywords. It will be mandatory on every computer sold in China after July 1, 2009.

The OpenNet Initiative worked this week to evaluate the functionality of Green Dam. In "China's Green Dam: The Implications of Government Control Encroaching on the Home PC," we review the functional elements of this new software and explore the possible effects of its implementation on a national scale. We conclude that Green Dam is deeply flawed and poses critical security concerns for users. See also Analysis of the Green Dam Censorware System Scott Wolchok, Randy Yao, and J. Alex Halderman, omputer Science and Engineering Division, The University of Michigan.