Feeds

Skype uses peer pressure defense to explain China text censorship

Following orders and examples

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

VoIP firm Skype has admitted that its Chinese partner filters instant messages sent using its software to comply with local censorship laws. Tom Online, Skype's joint venture partner in China, has "implemented a text filter, which is what everyone else in that market is doing. Those are the regulations", Skype chief executive Niklas Zennstrom told the Financial Times.

The technology blocks messages containing phrases such as "Falun Gong" and "Dalai Lama" to satisfy local laws. China, along with the US and Germany, are the three biggest markets for Skype in terms of active users of its free internet telephony service, so it's not entirely surprising that the eBay subsidiary has taken the same stance as Google and other US high tech firms in kowtowing to Beijing's demands.

Yahoo! has been strongly criticised for handing over email data to the Chinese authorities that assisted in the prosecution and imprisonment of three dissidents.

On Wednesday, pressure group Reporters Without Borders highlighted the case of Jiang Lijun, 39, who was jailed on subversion charges for four years in November 2003. The evidence against Jiang reportedly came in the form of draft emails stored in his Yahoo! account, which the internet giant's Hong Kong subsidiary handed over to prosecutors.

Zennstrom said the censorship actions of Tom Online avoided putting Chinese users of Skype at similar risk. "Those things are in no way jeopardising the privacy or the security of any of the users," he said. ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
UK fuzz want PINCODES on ALL mobile phones
Met Police calls for mandatory passwords on all new mobes
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
Fifteen zero days found in hacker router comp romp
Four routers rooted in SOHOpelessly Broken challenge
EE: STILL Blighty's best mobe network, says 'Frappucino' Moore
Fresh round of network stats fisticuffs possibly on the cards here
Déjà vu: Virgin Media jacks up broadband prices
Screw copper phone lines, we're UNIQUE, bleats telco
New Sprint CEO says he will lower axe on staff – but prices come first
'Very disruptive' new rates to be revealed next week
US TV stations bowl sueball directly at FCC's spectrum mega-sale
Broadcasters upset about coverage and cost as they shift up and down the dials
Canadian ISP Shaw falls over with 'routing' sickness
How sure are you of cloud computing now?
UK mobile coverage is BETTER than EVER, networks tell Ofcom
Regulator swallows this line and parrots it back out at us. What are they playing at?
What's the nature of your emergency, Vodafone?
Oh, you've dialled the wrong number for ad fibs, rules ASA
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.