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Everyone knows that China is not exactly the most Internet friendly country, in fact the Chinese government pretty much hates it. Despite being a truly connected superpower, the Chinese government has already declared war on Internet porn. Of course, the Internet is a cool tool when used as a weapon by the army of Chinese government sponsored hackers against other countries.

Now it seems that the Chinese authorities are turning their weapons of mass censorship on all citizens. It seems that as from next month, every PC sold in China will have Green Dam software installed. Green what? Well, the software will be installed under the direct orders of the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology. What does it do, I'll give you one guess? yeas, that's right, it censors the Internet automatically. The blocking software is being touted as a simple pornography filtering tool, but just happens to be developed by a company called Jinhui Computer System Engineering which is thought to have ties to the country's military. A spokeswoman for the company, Miss Zhou, however let slip that it will "automatically filter pornographic images and antirevolutionary content" and add that this was "very good news for users, so they should not uninstall it."

Yeah right.

As well as Green Dam, PCs will also come pre-installed with Youth Escort. This one filters out rude or "subversive" words. Nice.

Lenovo is said to be participating in the scheme, although it has been strangely quiet on the matter when it comes to press comment so far. Dell are said to be seeking clarification from the Chinese government. Given that China is now the largest PC market in the world after the USA, I suspect that most manufacturers will simply cave in to protect their positions and claim that users will be able to uninstall the software if they don't like it.

Did I say "yeah right" already?

As Editorial Director and Managing Analyst with IT Security Thing I am putting more than two decades of consulting experience into providing opinionated insight regarding the security threat landscape for IT security professionals. As an Editorial Fellow with Dennis Publishing, I bring more than two decades of writing experience across the technology industry into publications such as Alphr, IT Pro and (in good old fashioned print) PC Pro. I also write for SC Magazine UK and Infosecurity, as well as The Times and Sunday Times newspapers. Along the way I have been honoured with a Technology Journalist of the Year award, and three Information Security Journalist of the Year awards. Most humbling, though, was the Enigma Award for 'lifetime contribution to IT security journalism' bestowed on me in 2011.

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