Using Tor and VPN’s in countries where they are banned


07/19/2016 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ VPN


Just a few days ago Turkey Blocks (turkeyblocks.org) reported that they have verified that Tor and VPN access is now being blocked throughout Turkey.

Governments can block certain types of internet traffic by looking at the types of packets being transmitted and if necessary do what is called “deep packet Inspection” (DPI) to ascertain what type of traffic is being transmitted.

The good news is there are technologies that are able to hide your packets from inspection. They have been proven in China, Iran and elsewhere so we know they work.

While there are many proprietary methods to hide VPN and Tor traffic we will focus on the open source methods offered by many VPN providers. These two methods are used to wrap OpenVPN packets inside other more common traffic to evade DPI. They are SSL (Secure Socket Layer) and SSH (Secure Shell). Because web traffic uses SSL for encryption wrapping OpenVPN traffic in SSL enable it to pass inspection. Another less common method is SSH. Used mostly for businesses to access Unix systems, it works the same was as SSL.

Another less used is called Obfsproxy. This works like the above methods by wrapping Tor packets in an obfuscation layer however this layer is not encrypted so it’s not quite as secure. It does benefit by having a much less bandwidth overhead because of it’s lack of encryption. So it is particularly useful in countries where low bandwidth is common. All the above methods must be offered by your VPN provider in order for you to use them.

covertactions.com provides a list of the VPN’s using these methods. Using the last search field use the words or phrases without quotes: “ssh tunnel”, “ssl tunnel” or to find both use the word “obfuscation”

Also there is a free open source VPN now available as a direct result of the situation in Turkey. It is called Streisand. Once again use the last search field to find it.

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