You may be hearing China’s policies in the news when it comes to Internet use/censorship. Or maybe you be hearing the term “Great Firewall of China.” This is used to describe China’s restrictive firewall. The firewall blocks services such as the Google Play Store and WhatsApp, to websites such as Facebook and The New York Times. Now, there are emerging reports that China may be moving to block Virtual Private Networks.
Is China Really Trying to Block VPNs?
According to Bloomberg:
“China’s government has told telecommunications carriers to block individuals’ access to virtual private networks by Feb. 1, people familiar with the matter said, thereby shutting a major window to the global Internet.”
As of July 19, a Chinese telecoms carrier says that has a notice from authorities directing them to start blocking VPN services. Moreover, only a few weeks prior, Hong Kong based service GreenVPN was forced to shut down after receiving notice from Chinese regulators.
Also, China is issuing partial blocks to popular encrypted messaging app WhatsApp, preventing users from sending photos, videos, and some text messages.
From these instances alone, it seems China will be heavily cracking down on tools and services that circumvent the Great Firewall.
Why Are VPNs Popular in China?
When a VPN is in use, all of your network traffic is rerouted through a VPN server. Furthermore, this privacy tunnel encrypts your data flow. It also provides you with a different IP address in the location of your choosing. In short, this allows users in China to bypass the “Great Firewall” and its restrictions.
Consequently, if this law to block VPNs goes into effect by the beginning of next year it will leave China’s Internet users without access to global unrestricted Internet. Left without a way to bypass the firewall, people in China will be stuck with whatever Internet the government allows.
Blocking VPN services could also be troubling for international companies who rely on VPNs to access servers. In the past, China’s actions against VPNs had companies thinking twice about operating their businesses there.
Will China’s VPN Block Work?
However, it must be stated that China’s VPN block may not even work. In 2012, the Wall Street Journal reported on Chinese users accessing the Internet by means other than VPN. Citizens seem to always find a way around authoritative State measures.
Governments can seem like omnipotent beasts with divine power. However, one should take a step back and realize this simply is not the case. The State is able to derive power based on an assumed legitimacy. However, the State can lose legitimacy in the eyes of citizens. This will happen if the State takes actions that its Citizens deem as not in their best interests. A loss of legitimacy leads to a loss of perceived power, which in turn opens the door for Citizens to take action in their own hands.
For now, the action that Chinese Citizens (and people visiting China) can take to get around the Authoritative State is using a VPN router.
Using a VPN Configured FlashRouter In China
If you plan to visit China, we recommend taking note of the potential options available to you. All of our FlashRouters can work in China and can be used alongside a Chinese ISP modem/router in a Dual Router Setup.
On our VPN by Country page, you can view popular VPN and FlashRouter recommendations for China. All things considered, one of our most popular FlashRouters for any country is the Linksys WRT1900ACS DD-WRT features a 1.6 Ghz Marvell processor and 4 external antennas. Ultimately, this makes it a great balance of range and power.
More top VPN routers for China include:
- Netgear Nighthawk R7800: A 1.7 GHz Broadcom processor at a competitive price-point.
- Asus RT-AC3200: Six external antennas offering the most powerful Tomato performance on a FlashRouter.
Recommended VPN Providers
ExpressVPN is a great VPN provider that has a long history of use in China. Based in the British Virgin Islands, with servers in 75+ countries across the globe, ExpressVPN offers a comprehensive reach and provides unobstructed access to international content. Their network is SSL secured with 256-bit encryption. Furthermore, ExpressVPN constantly optimizes to provide premium speed and optimal bandwidth.
Using VPN Routers To Access Worldwide Content
VPN solutions will not only work in China, but any country that censors the Internet. However, FlashRouters has had experience assisting customers dealing with intrusive governments world wide. Whether it is the draconian censorship of Saudi Arabia or the United Arab Emirates or the snooping eyes of the National Security Agency in the United States, FlashRouters is here to offer solutions. Even recent anti-privacy policies in the UK or the Data Retention restrictions in Australia.
Futhermore, placing a pre-configured VPN router in your network will allow for full spectrum encryption. Any device connected to a FlashRouter will be encrypted by the VPN. Concerned about leakage? A VPN network is a solution.
Location Leaking Prevention Techniques
If your concern is with leaking of your location, a FlashRouter can help. Securing your devices on a network level with a VPN Router is an imperative. To add levels of prevention and security, try incorporating a VPN Kill Switch into your VPN network.
With a Kill Switch, if the VPN connection on the router drops, the Internet connection on the router turns off. Moreover, this offers a sense of reassurance. You will not have to worry about being revealed to a nefarious government by a VPN cut out. Ultimately, FlashRouters will setup a kill switch on your router free of charge with any router.
Questions About Your VPN & Router Options?
Our team at FlashRouters has extensive experience in navigating the privacy and security needs of users worldwide from thousands of satisfied customers worldwide.
Send our Networking Experts a message and we will offer one on one consultation for your specific setup and situation. Moreover, solving these tough issues from UK to China to Singapore is our primary mission.