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[liberationtech] Planet Blue Coat: Mapping Global Censorship and Surveillance Tools

Ronald Deibert r.deibert at
Wed Jan 16 04:23:46 PST 2013

Dear Lib Tech colleagues

I am pleased to announce the Citizen Lab's latest report:

Planet Blue Coat: Mapping Global Censorship and Surveillance Tools 
January 15, 2013

The following individuals contributed to this report: 
Morgan Marquis-Boire (lead technical research) and Jakub Dalek (lead technical research), Sarah McKune (lead legal research), Matthew Carrieri, Masashi Crete-Nishihata, Ron Deibert, Saad Khan, Marianne Lau, Helmi Noman, John Scott-Railton, and Greg Wiseman.

Full report and details here:

New York Times report here:

Summary of Key Findings

		• Blue Coat Devices capable of filtering, censorship, and surveillance are being used around the world.  During several weeks of scanning and validation that ended in January 2013, we uncovered 61 Blue Coat ProxySG devices and 316 Blue Coat PacketShaper appliances, devices with specific functionality permitting filtering, censorship, and surveillance.

		• 61 of these Blue Coat appliances are on public or government networks in countries with a history of concerns over human rights, surveillance, and censorship (11 ProxySG and 50 PacketShaper appliances).  We found:

		• Blue Coat ProxySG: Egypt, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, the UAE. 

		• PacketShaper: Afghanistan, Bahrain, China, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Malaysia, Nigeria, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Turkey, and Venezuela.

		• Our findings support the need for national and international scrutiny of the country Blue Coat implementations we have identified, and a closer look at the global proliferation of “dual-use” information and communications technologies. ISPs responsible for these deployments should consider publicly clarifying their function, and we hope Blue Coat will take this report as an opportunity to explain their due diligence process to ensure that their devices are not used in ways that violate human rights.

Ronald Deibert
Director, the Citizen Lab 
and the Canada Centre for Global Security Studies
Munk School of Global Affairs
University of Toronto
(416) 946-8916
r.deibert at

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