With the rapid increase of internet users around the world, censoring the internet traffic imposed at ISP level, Geo-location level or country level limits the user ability to access certain resources over internet. Internet censorship imposed by educational institution, Company/organization to certain content is the common practice.
Censoring the educational content which educates the users, informative URL like Wikipedia, etc is not likely to be censored. Such resources educate the users and generate awareness. Well, there are certain ways to that your ISP can impose censorship on your internet traffic, which results in inaccessibility of important resources. Here, in this article we will cover that how you can bypass the censorship or filtering on internet traffic imposed by your ISP.
Ways to Bypass Internet Censorship
Many ISP (Internet Service Provider) impose filtering at the DNS server level. ISP have their own DNS server, so they can censor the internet traffic easily. Let’s see how DNS filtering works.
- You requested for the www.google.com from your browser
- Browser contact DNS server to resolve www.google.com to IP address that servers this website
- DNS server will find the matching IP address in its database
- If the IP address is found it will return with the response or if it is filtered out than it will return blank or error web page or redirects to another page as per the rules set by ISP
Now, here we assume that filtering is imposed at DNS level. Here, the solution to bypass DNS filter is to change the ISP provided DNS server IP to Public DNS provider IP. There are many company that provide free DNS (said as Public DNS). To configure Public DNS server, prefer the detail article in How to configure Public DNS
VPN (Virtual Private Network) is the solution to bypass censorship imposed at geo-graphical level, ISP level or country level. With the use of VPN you can access blocked contents, bypass restrictions and can obtain enhanced privacy and security but not anonymity.
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VPN creates the secure virtual tunnel between user and VPN server remotely. All the traffic will be routed over the secure virtual tunnel in encrypted form. VPN providers have their server located in various countries, the more servers the more option to switch among them. Suppose if you are surfing from Canada and the certain content is blocked in Canada and available for US users than you can connect to VPN server located in US remotely and this is how you can bypass the filter and access the content.
Before you start using VPN, you should be aware of certain things like what is VPN, VPN Myths you should stop believing, VPN increase response time. Here are the Top VPNs to choose from. With VPN you can bypass restrictions like region-based filtering, ISP filtering, Packet filtering, URL filters.
If the filtering is imposed at URL level, than proxy servers can come handy to bypass the URL filters. Proxy allows you to make an indirect connection to the target resource. Suppose, if your ISP has blocked certain URL than with the use of proxy server you can access the blocked content. Your internet traffic will route through the proxy server but it is not reliable to use.
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Configuring a proxy is quite a headache. For instant proxy you can use web-based proxy. Free proxy comes with advertisements. If you prefer to pay for proxy service than you should go for VPN service instead of proxy. Proxy like hide.me, hidemyass can come handy when you want to quickly access any blocked URL. Use VPN rather than proxy because certain proxy IP can be censored and blocked.
SSH (Secure Shell) Tunnels can be used to bypass local filters, firewall. When you request an URL from browser, it pass through router, modem, ISP server and finally to the remote server. So, your request can be filtered at any level and results in blocked access to the requested resource. To get unrestricted access you can set an SSH tunnel, which routes traffic from the remote server in encrypted form. Hence, this bypass the censorship imposed at router or ISP level.
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SSH Tunnels can be useful while using public WiFi. All you need a SSH client like PuTTY to access remote Linux server of your SSH Tunnel. If you are planning to pay for SSH than go for VPN which is the better.
Tor: the onion browser which is well known for serving anonymous browsing. Tor routes your internet traffic from relay of tor networks before exiting from the tor network. Tor can bypass ISP level, company level, country level censorship which results in unrestricted access. Tor is slower because it routes traffic through many relay networks than normal browsing and also due to its randomizing IP feature. Tor is free and open source.
Well, Tor is well known for serving anonymous browsing. Is Tor really anonymous and secure?
Now, if you stumble upon any blocked resource than you can find the way out to achieve unrestricted access. These are the ways to bypass certain censorship. If you learned something today than do share with others. Keep sharing. Stay tuned to Tech Tunes.
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