Li Keqiang's Passing and CCP Panic over Information Flow

Li Keqiang's Passing and CCP Panic over Information Flow
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On October 27, 2023, China witnessed a significant loss of its former premier, Li Keqiang, who tragically passed to a sudden heart attack. Li's legacy remains in the heart of the People's Republic of China, where his impact on economic and foreign policy remains unmatched. With the unexpected passing of this influential figure, AstroVPN, in collaboration with like-minded censorship resistance organizations, seeks to shed light on the profound challenges that now confront the evolving censorship landscape within China.

Early Warning from Customers

Shortly after the public announcement of Li Keqiang's passing, we received alarming communications from concerned customers. These individuals relayed news articles and media clips that hinted at an impending crackdown on censorship evasion methods, including the utilization of Virtual Private Networking services- like AstroVPN. The People's Republic of China has a history of implementing strategic information control campaigns during times of political and social instability.

The unexpected passing of Li Keqiang only underscores the gravity of the situation. It is evident that, once again, we can anticipate a surge in efforts to stifle online freedom and circumvent censorship in the wake of this significant event.

Industry Predictions

In light of these developments, we believe that a few well-executed campaigns, either already in progress or forthcoming, will greatly influence the local residents, tourists, and service providers such as AstroVPN, which provide tools for bypassing online censorship.

Increased Anti-VPN Efforts

  • We suspect that VPN services and similar solutions that offer censorship bypassing or resisting services are at increased risk of state-sponsored hacking and other malicious attempts against infrastructure (including humans, traditionally the weakest link in cyber security).

Crackdown on Local Residents

  • It may become harder to obtain censorship-resisting tools, like VPN installer files and application downloads. Traditionally, app marketplaces are heavily filtered in China and regions with heavy internet censorship. Methods used to obtain these tools on devices like iPhones (where software cannot be installed through downloadable files) become much more challenging.

Longer Lasting Solutions

  • Solutions developed to prevent the circumvention of censorship in China are backed by an unlimited budget, scale, and timeframe. For this reason, new solutions and attempts to thwart censorship are expected to be longer-lasting and require more complex solutions.

The unexpected passing of former Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has set off alarm bells for AstroVPN and other censorship resistance groups. As news circulates of an impending crackdown on VPN services, the implications are profound. This potential crackdown has the capacity to seriously curtail the online freedom of billions of individuals in China, representing a significant challenge to open access to information and communication within the nation.