Our report on Tunisia’s Internet filtering regime is picking up some news coverage. The Associated Press has a piece in wide circulation, and here is a great BBC story featuring ONI researchers Derek Bambauer and Nart Villeneuve. It appears that the spotlight on Tunisia’s filtering regime is taking center stage at WSIS. Hopefully the debates will result in some significant attention being given to the detrimental consequences of unlawful censorship and surveillance practices.
Here is the blurb:
Drawing on open sources and a detailed year-long technical investigation, ONI research describes Tunisia’s aggressive targeting and blocking of on-line content, including political opposition Web sites, human rights groups, and sites that provide access to privacy-enhancing technologies. ONI research reveals that Tunisia’s government Internet agency, ATI, uses SmartFilter — filtering software produced by Secure Computing, a US-based company — as the basis of its filtering regime. Since all of Tunisia’s ISPs operate through ATI, the system is difficult to circumvent. Moreover, Tunisia’s public policy on filtering is opaque at best. The state falsifies the information provided to users who try to reach filtered sites; the error page received claims the site is not accessible for technical reasons. In sum, Tunisia’s control over its citizens’ access to Internet content places it at odds with the goals of the World Summit on the Information Society.