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Exploring Server-side Blocking of Regions
PhD Sadia Afroz
10.12.2018
Informatisches Kolloquium

Please not that the correct license for this recording is CC-0 and that the PDF slides shown during the lecture are available under the download tab.

arxiv link of the publication: https://arxiv.org/abs/1805.11606

Abstract:

One of the Internet's greatest strengths is the degree to which it facilitates access to any of its resources from users anywhere in the world. The Internet has already become a crucial part of our life. People around the world use the internet to communicate, connect, and do business. Yet various commercial, technical, and national interests constrain universal access to information on the internet.

I will discuss three reasons for the closed web that are not caused by government censorship: blocking visitors from the EU to avoid GDPR compliance, blocking based upon the visitor's country, and blocking due to security concerns. These decisions can have an adverse effect on the people of the blocked regions, especially for the developing regions. With many key services, such as education, commerce, and news, offered by a small number of web-based Western companies who might not view the developing world as worth the risk, these indiscriminate blanket blocking could slow the growth of blocked developing regions.

As we are building the future web, we need to discuss the implication of such blocking practices and build technologies that ensure an open web for users around the world.

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