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Dam Burst Tool Disables China's Green Dam Censorware

timothy posted about 5 years ago | from the dam-you-anti-social-coders dept.

Censorship 40

An anonymous reader writes "The infamous Green Dam censorship software has suffered yet another blow. As ZDNet explains, Dam Burst, a tool released by security researcher Jon Oberheide, allows unprivileged users to disable the censorware by removing the hooks that enable it to monitor and block user activity, effectively restoring running applications to their original uncensored state. While the Dam Burst software is currently available at Oberheide's website, community mirrors will undoubtedly be necessary to avoid blocking by the Great Firewall."

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Great, but.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29596439)

Didn't they back down from having this installed on all new PCs by default?

Re:Great, but.. (3, Informative)

rvw (755107) | about 5 years ago | (#29596505)

Dont tell: you probably haven't RTFA????

The Chinese government originally mandated that Green Dam be shipped on all new PCs but this pre-installation has been delayed.

TFA is wrong (3, Interesting)

jipn4 (1367823) | about 5 years ago | (#29597335)

The Chinese government originally mandated that Green Dam be shipped on all new PCs but this pre-installation has been delayed.

The Chinese government never mandated that Green Dam be shipped "on" or "pre-installed". It mandated that it ship with new PCs. It was sufficient simply to stick a CD in the shipping box, although preinstalling the software was also OK. Manufacturers could decide how to satisfy the requirement. It was up to the end user to decide whether to use it or not. The idea was to give parents the option of using filtering software for their children. If they didn't want to use it, they didn't have to.

The software described in TFA is no more a blow for freedom than software that lets kids get around NetNanny.

Woohoo (0, Offtopic)

grimmin-it (1645563) | about 5 years ago | (#29596485)

Woohoo Dam Burst! Booo Great Dam

Why so complicated? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29596499)

Can't you just install a clean OS?

Re:Why so complicated? (5, Funny)

oahazmatt (868057) | about 5 years ago | (#29596523)

Can't you just install a clean OS?

C'mon. This is China. It's not like you can just walk to a street corner and get a copy of XP.

Re:Why so complicated? (-1, Offtopic)

sonnejw0 (1114901) | about 5 years ago | (#29596713)

You know, China is a Republic. The elected officials are voted into office, and there are a vast array of parties, including a Democracy party that wants to reduce censorship etc. Most people in China like the government doing these things for them. It's better for the world and for themselves and their own children if they limit births to two kids. Citizens don't have to worry about virii and irrelevant websites on the reference resource known as the Internet. Most Chinese choose to live under these rules because it makes life easier for them, easier in that they have to make fewer decisions for themselves and thus worry less about their day to day lives.

I personally don't want my government like that. All I want is for my government to make it safe for me to live within its borders thanks to an army, and otherwise to get out of my way. I am perfectly capable of succeeding on my own with hard work, and the government reducing my choices is just them stymieing my potential. I thrive in choice. All I'm saying is, live and let live.

Re:Why so complicated? (2, Insightful)

andymadigan (792996) | about 5 years ago | (#29598341)

And they really don't want to be bothered with being able to search for "democracy" or "freedom"? Yes, I can see the Chinese people really have a say in their government.

Re:Why so complicated? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29596909)

You call that a clean copy?

Re:Why so complicated? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29599623)

You call that a clean OS?

Re:Why so complicated? (1)

jijacob (943393) | about 5 years ago | (#29597013)

I bet you can download ubuntu though. And burn it to a CD. If not ubuntu there are a significant number of lesser-known free operating systems.

Re:Why so complicated? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29597113)

Woooosh!

Re:Why so complicated? (1)

Smivs (1197859) | about 5 years ago | (#29597179)

I bet you can download ubuntu though. And burn it to a CD.

Yes, but ubuntu is free open-source software and no-one in China knows what "Free" or "Open" mean.

Re:Why so complicated? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29599211)

http://www.redflag-linux.com/en/download.php [redflag-linux.com]

You are a dumb-ass. Not to mention a bigot.

Re:Why so complicated? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29599449)

I lun ledfrag rinux, you insensitiv crod!

Re:Why so complicated? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29604137)

You are hirarious. Not to mention a bigot.

Re:Why so complicated? (2, Insightful)

Smivs (1197859) | about 5 years ago | (#29599749)

Yes, but ubuntu is free open-source software and no-one in China knows what "Free" or "Open" mean.

You are a dumb-ass. Not to mention a bigot.

My comment was aimed at the consequences of the repressive politics of China, not it's people, so please don't think of me as a bigot. I am grateful for the freedoms and open-ness of our society, and I merely chose to express my view through irony.

Re:Why so complicated? (1)

EspressoFreak (237002) | about 5 years ago | (#29602419)

Actually, you can.

I'll wait for the Ang Lee Documentary (1, Interesting)

Ukab the Great (87152) | about 5 years ago | (#29596525)

"Bursting Dam, Flying Dutch Boy"

Re:I'll wait for the Ang Lee Documentary (1)

tobiah (308208) | about 5 years ago | (#29599285)

humorless mods

Bursting Dams (0, Offtopic)

Drunken Buddhist (467947) | about 5 years ago | (#29596535)

Now with the oppressive soviet porn filter removed, I believe we'll see dams bursting in record numbers. Though if it's green, you should probably see a doctor.

In soviet china, dam bursts you!

but you'd still be doing something illegal (5, Insightful)

lapsed (1610061) | about 5 years ago | (#29596561)

If Green Dam software were required in China (and it's not yet clear that it will be), disabling it might be trivial but the act of disabling it would open the user to prosecution. A Chinese user could 'accidentally' click on a site they should not have seen but it's hard to see disabling Green Dam software as anything but deliberate. Having said that, I think Oberheide's work is commendable.

Man in the middle? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29596721)

If China has so much control over traffic, what is to keep them from simply running a man in the middle attack,
and redirecting your download or website request to an identical looking trojan download?

Re:Man in the middle? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29597719)

If China has so much control over traffic, what is to keep them from simply running a man in the middle attack,
and redirecting your download or website request to an identical looking trojan download?

Thank you very much for the idea.

-- The Chinese Government

Re:Man in the middle? (1)

VoltageX (845249) | about 5 years ago | (#29601889)

distributing this via magnet link might be a good idea.

power to the people (2)

randizzle (964653) | about 5 years ago | (#29596891)

well done Mr Oberheide.

Why/how is a non-admin allowed to do this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29597185)

Not that I want to provide assistance to making Green Dam more effective, and I also don't know anything about how it's implemented, but why are these hooks apparently running in the user priviledge ring? Shouldn't they be on a more priviledged ring, thus making them immune to removal by a non-admin?

Re:Why/how is a non-admin allowed to do this? (1)

moon3 (1530265) | about 5 years ago | (#29597607)

If you remove local firewall you raise flags on the outer "Great firewall", so this will be seen as a breach anyway, seams to me that local filtering software is only the first stopper layer to reduce number of outer hammerers -- having a local firewall reduces the number of breakers of the main China filtering layer at any given time, so the Chinese internet gestapo can better focus on the particular violators.

Mirrors? Sure, and P2P too (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29597289)

Talking about mirrors, seeding it on eDonkey and Gnutella might be useful.
ed2k://|file|DamBurst-1.2.exe|96680|f382f3f5092b2050abedeff342e6ae99|/ and magnet:?xt=urn:sha1:ZYZDBKH4LQQVGV4SIYHYT4CGU5UFYSG4&xl=96680&dn=DamBurst-1.2.exe
Good luck for censoring such mirrors.

Man in the middle... (1)

ZarathustraDK (1291688) | about 5 years ago | (#29597367)

Clippy: "I see you're trying to install some nice software, would you like some uniformed men to help you with that? Yes, Ok, Absolutely!"

How do I get Green Dam? (5, Funny)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about 5 years ago | (#29597661)

"As a pleasant side effect, disabling the Green Dam components within a running process actually increases the security of the end host as the vulnerable code paths within the Green Dam software are no longer exploitable by an attacker. "

That being true, I want to install Green Dam so that I can use Dam Burst. Awesome!! Our benevolent brothers in China have helped to make teh intartubez secure!!!

Re:How do I get Green Dam? (1)

Runaway1956 (1322357) | about 5 years ago | (#29597735)

http://www.lssw365.net/index.php/List/index/pid/2 [lssw365.net]

The NERVE of those Chinese! Their site is written in CHINESE!! Don't they know that half the world is monolingual? oh - wait - wut did I just say? Whoops, they ARE almost half the world!

Sounds like fun (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29597989)

I remember some software involving dam busting [wikipedia.org] before. Is this a modern remake?

A little late (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29598339)

Green Dam was canceled weeks ago after many complaints. They're now rolling out Blue Dam, which doesn't run on PC's but is run by the ISP's instead.

China sucks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29598515)

How do the people of China stand for this type of oppression? I would think they would revolt and want freedom, at a minimum on the internet...

Re:China sucks (1)

koxkoxkox (879667) | about 5 years ago | (#29601747)

Some of them do, and they risk their lives. You can find a lot of stories of bloggers who disappeared in the middle of the night not to be seen again.

The majority of the people don't want to risk their live just to be able to speak of abstract concepts. The censorship is well known of everyone, but is a minor inconvenience for most.

Setup mirrors! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29599605)

As the poster mentions, mirrors will probably be needed. Here's one: http://www.singleclick.info/ [singleclick.info]

âoeIn China, at least I would have a trial" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#29611209)

Am I the only one who sees a new cold war propaganda tune in this story? Now that Iran is bad once again and China seems to be evil again, we're going to be fed how evil they are with a bland mix of lies and some news about software. Duhh. Here's how bad some people see China vs USA:

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/

The U.S. government has just received the ultimate put-down from one of its Guantanamo prisoners. Arkin Mahmud, a Chinese Uighur who has been held at the prison camp for 8 years, stated ruefully, âoeIn China, at least I would have a trial and sentence.â

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