[LINK] Iran deep packet inspection

stephen at melbpc.org.au stephen at melbpc.org.au
Sat Jun 27 18:27:21 EST 2009

> From:   PoliticsOnline <editor at politicsonline.com>
> Date:   Fri, 26 Jun 2009 15:40:59 -0400 (EDT) 
> Subject:   Weekly NetPulse - Iran's Complex Content-Tracking 
 Weekly NetPulse - Iran's Complex Content-Tracking  
 June 26, 2009 

Iran's Complex Content- Tracking

The Iranian government has gone far beyond smashing computers, blocking 
access to Web sites or breaking Internet connections in an effort to stop 
citizen journalists from reporting within Iran and to keep the foreign 
media out. 

The Iranian government performs online-content inspection on a national 
scale and coordinated at a single location. 

With assistance of European telecommunications companies, the Iranian 
government has developed "one of the world's most sophisticated 
mechanisms for controlling and censoring the Internet." 

In an attempt to censor its people, the Iranian government has been 
tracking the content of individual online communications through a 
practive called deep packet inspections. 

According to the WSJ, "Deep packet inspection involves inserting 
equipment into a flow of online data, from emails and Internet phone 
calls to images and messages on social-networking sites such as Facebook 
and Twitter. Every digitized packet of online data is deconstructed, 
examined for keywords and reconstructed within milliseconds. In Iran's 
case, this is done for the entire country at a single choke point, 
according to networking engineers familiar with the country's system." 

Reports from Iranian Internet users saying that the Internet is running 
at less than a tenth the speed it usually does may be a sign of the 
government's use of deep packet inspections. Without an increase in 
processing power, the online data filtering system would lead to drastic 
delays in online transmission. 

Blocking websites is no longer a viable option for censoring its people 
since videos like the one of a young Iranian woman named Neda can be sent 
out online and posted by multiple users outiside of Iran. 

Repressive regimes, such as the one in Iran, the scanning of messsage by 
message from a central "monitoring center" has allowed the government to 
to choke the flow of information and the use of deep packet inspections, 
which enable authorities to not only block communication but to "monitor 
it to gather information about individuals, as well as alter it for 
disinformation purposes."  


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