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Anonymous Lists Sites. and VoIP Services, Blocked In the UAE

timothy posted about 2 years ago | from the state-is-not-your-friend dept.

Censorship 42

another random user writes "A group of Anonymous-affiliated hackers claims to have gained access to the servers in charge of filtering Internet traffic in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). According to the hackers, they have identified a number of domain categories that are currently being blocked. These include websites that host adult content, VPN providers and any other site that could help users bypass censorship mechanisms, social media networks and dating sites, and ones that promote religious views other than Islam. The most 'shocking' discovery, as described by the hackers, is the fact that many websites that offer Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services are also on the list. 'A large part of UAE's population is made of migrant workers and the telecom industry made a lot of profit by overcharging them for international phone calls. But with the raise of VOIP and internet communication they were afraid that this would take away their profits and thus went ahead to block VOIP,' they explained."

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Apparently, it's not that bad. (4, Insightful)

BanHammor (2587175) | about 2 years ago | (#40575279)

Because if you block those for the majority of the population, productivity will skyrocket.

And? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40575281)

Was I supposed to be surprised!?

Missing keyword (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40575283)

At least it is known that the filter is based on a blacklist.

Generic Article Template (2, Insightful)

billcopc (196330) | about 2 years ago | (#40575383)

Here's an easy fill-in-the-blanks template to deduplicate about a third of /. submissions:

"Western [social class] shocked at [tyrannical behaviour] in [undeveloped nation]. Allusions to widespread corruption cause outrage. [fingers|guns|nukes] pointed. [links to U.S. corporate interests] completely ignored. [someone else] should do something."

Yes, the UAE is a shithole run by fascist inbred swine. I think I figured that out by the time I started kindergarten. Perhaps we could figure out a way to extract the bad guys and paradrop them on a secluded island that is subjected to hourly carpet bombings. Or maybe tie them to a desk chair and force them to work for Joel Spolsky, but that seems cruel.

Re:Generic Article Template (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40575719)

>>Perhaps we could figure out a way to extract the bad guys and paradrop them on a secluded island that is subjected to hourly carpet bombings
Don't forget to drop US leaders off on that island as well...

Re:Generic Article Template (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40579197)

Because according to you, "Anonymous" is the name of one really angry dude living in the UAE.

RTC (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40575393)

Do they also block 56k modems on landline? Because if you do not require the 1M+ scripts and CSS from your average web 2.0 site, you still can access most of the internet's actual content. You occasionally just have to wait for some jpeg to finish loading if you really want to see it.

Editors? (4, Funny)

Goaway (82658) | about 2 years ago | (#40575493)

Slashdot Editors Ignore. Strange Punctuation, In Headline.

Re:Editors? (4, Funny)

hedleyroos (817147) | about 2 years ago | (#40575651)

No editor can be that poor at English. It must be on purpose.

Re:Editors? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40576749)

IT's a
code., toGet past th3 sensors

Re:Editors? (1)

SpzToid (869795) | about 2 years ago | (#40577517)

You mean as in stenography?

Re:Editors? (1)

Ihmhi (1206036) | about 2 years ago | (#40578859)

Maybe William Shatner has started ghostwriting for Slashdot.

Re:Editors? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40576487)

What editors?

They couldn't even correct "raise of VoIP" to "rise of VoIP"...

Colour me surprised (1)

benjfowler (239527) | about 2 years ago | (#40575533)

A barbarian with lots of money is STILL a barbarian.

The Gulf Arabs still haven't gotten the memo.

Re:Colour me surprised (3, Informative)

girlintraining (1395911) | about 2 years ago | (#40576535)

A barbarian with lots of money is STILL a barbarian.

No, a barbarian with a lot of money is called a CEO.

Did anyone else download the list... (3, Insightful)

gshegosh (1587463) | about 2 years ago | (#40575585)

...just to find some interesting websites to take a look at? :-)

Nearly a state-run monopoly... (4, Informative)

vwgtiturbo (668171) | about 2 years ago | (#40575589)

I deploy there quite a bit, and there used to be only one option for phone calls, Etisalat. Before I learned about VPN services, I had no choice but to get screwed by them (it was about a dollar per minute in a prepaid cell card). Another company finally came in from Dubai (Du) but I am not sure what the rates are, as I was already using a VPN and never needed to use the cell. In any case, the UAE is the perfect hypocritical example. While the locals are running around doing whatever they want, non-locals are fairly restricted (unless you have money and knew where to go).

Re:Nearly a state-run monopoly... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40576647)

It's not clear from your post but Dubai is a part of the United Arab Emirates (UAE). You were in another Emirate within UAE, maybe Abu Dhabi (Abu Dhabi, the city, is the capital of UAE). Dubai, particularly in Dubai City, is significantly more secular and liberal than most of UAE. I suspect this blacklist posted by Anonymous is but one of many and that in some emirates the list is much more extensive.

I think it's funny "analytics," "analyzer," and "analyser" are on the wildcard blocklist.

haha (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40575625)

the list posted is also blocked in uae now!

Yuo Fail It? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40575627)

the hard drive to don't be afrai%d

Another example why net neutrality is needed. (1)

ad454 (325846) | about 2 years ago | (#40575655)

Nice to know that this is the model that is being promoted in Canada, USA, and other western nations to protect us and our children from the bad guys, when it is really about protecting out-dated corporate business models and interests.

It is a shame that the vast ignorant masses have no interest in knowing that their plutocratic governments are screwing them over, in exchange for campaign contributions, cushy post-government jobs, lecture fees, and other perks.

i'll say it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40575871)

this aspect of anonymous looks like a cia op again.....
and the backspin will be all govts need more control....

look at all the anti hacker crap in news sites last few days....

Re:i'll say it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40580689)

You know you are doing something right when conspiracy theorists start talking about you.

Islam is the problem (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40575899)

So many people are deluded into thinking Dubai is some kind of secular state, when they're really just another Islamic theocracy. Good for Anonymous for helping shatter that perception.

Seriously, when the most secular-appearing Muslim-dominated country has even less separation of church and state than even the most religiously conservative country of any other religion (Christianity included), the problem is Islam.

Fuck Islam.

Re:Islam is the problem (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40575937)

Baloney. Dubai is a secular state. Run by an unelected family, but they have no problem with Europeans wearing tiny bikinis.

Re:Islam is the problem (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40576325)

A secular state where proselytizers of religions other than Islam are subject to arrest and prosecution, and even though liberal compared to other predominantly Islam countries, dressing immodestly can still face arrest. Dubai is San Francisco compared to some other Middle-Eastern states, yet cannot be called a secular state while its legal code is used to enforce religious mores. Mind you, there are plenty of European countries where the same is true.

Re:Islam is the problem (1)

couchslug (175151) | about 2 years ago | (#40578541)

My deployment on a friendly basis to the most prosperous nations Muslims ever produced made me utterly despise Islam.

All religion is nonsense, but Islam is extremely oppressive nonsense. If it were a secular ideology, it would get zero respect. Only because fools respect fantasy is superstition not treated with the contempt it deserves.

I am shockinged! Shockinged! (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 2 years ago | (#40576257)

Why is what a kleptocracy and dictatorship does "shocking"?

What do you think people there, or here, seek power for in government? So they can gain economic advantages by putting competition, forcefully, out of business.

Title goes here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40577537)

I personally want to see a list of sites blocked in the UK, because I really do not trust the IWF.

Esp. if they're like the Australian gov't who's leaked blacklist included Redtube and so forth.

Shocking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40577733)

Tools for censorship misused, news at 11.

Linux Distributions Blocked (2)

Sesostris III (730910) | about 2 years ago | (#40578183)

10959 []
11772 []
11189 []

What on earth could they have against Slackware, OpenSuSE and Mandriva? There are other entries:

11304 []
11312 []

but these could be explained by being torrents. No Debian, CentOS or Mageia in the list. Strange.

Re:Linux Distributions Blocked (1)

santax (1541065) | about 2 years ago | (#40578387)

I think they found out that Debian is just the better linux-distro of them all :)

Re:Linux Distributions Blocked (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40580787)

For SuSe, they're just protecting their clients from the "YaST" system management software. , If I did IT there, I't thank them for cutting aggravating hours off my overloaded workweek. My god, that mish-mash of badly done management tools is bad. If I wanted to waste that much time, I'd just randomly remap the letters on my keyboard once a week, including randomized capitalization and control characters.

It does make me wonder if those blocks are due to bandwidth use for expensive international traffic.

maybe the bible study tool (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40587997)

There is some sort of study tool for the bible. Many Linux distributions ship it.

Re:Linux Distributions Blocked (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40588829)

I'm from UAE, none of the links is blocked.

Offtopic about UAE (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40578621)

Anyone else wondering why the Unusable Amiga Emulator would block sites and VOIP services when reading the topic? ;)

Skype works in the UAE (1)

bunyip (17018) | about 2 years ago | (#40580317)

How do I know this? I was using it from my hotel room about an hour ago...

Re:Skype works in the UAE (1)

hashp (68887) | about 2 years ago | (#40581495)

Yes it does indeed, for some reason. I live here, I know. [] is not available though.

Blocked (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40580451)

LOL in Dubai at the moment and can't access the link because it is blocked.

Compared to other countries in the region the censorship is mild, the only website I would like access to that is constantly blocked is reddit/atheism.

It is an Islamic country and like all religious countries they do have some religious based laws. Also it is illegal to use non approved telephone services (eg external VOIP services) so really they are blocking what is illegal in this country.

How Ironic, it's blocked (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40580955)

I'm in the UAE LOL.

Time to fire up my trusty VPN software and check that URL.

The sheikhs of oil are cuddly and cute.

I "blocked" OKCupid! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 years ago | (#40581321)

I was in Sharjah, next to Dubai when I went to check OKCupid a second time 30min later it was blocked. Up popped a nice little message:
"Access to this site is currently blocked. The site falls under the Prohibited Content Categories of the UAE's Internet Access Management Policy"

This was back in 2009. I also witnessed some young muslim girls take off their hijabs to stick their feet in the ocean. The police had arrived and were reluctantly enforcing the law in the presence of a religious man. The girls tried to make a run for it and the religious guy grabbed and held one by the hair!

  Something like 17% of the residents are citizens. The rest are workers or tourists. It's a very odd place!

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