New software, expected to be released Monday, will disable or remove China's latest computer controlling software, “Green Dam-Youth Escort,” from users' computers.
The Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has ordered that all computers purchased in China after July 1 have Green Dam pre-installed.
While the regime claims Green Dam will mainly block pornography, filter illicit content and check browsing records, research done in the U.S. indicates that the software has multiple controlling and tracking devices including blocking sensitive Web sites and software used to evade China's Great Firewall, taking screenshots every three minutes, and recording passwords.
Because of tight control of the Internet, the new software that disables Green Dam will have to be distributed person-to-person, said Bill Xia, CEO of Dynamic Internet Technology Inc., the U.S.-based anti-censorship company that developed the new software.
“First, we will reach out to all our current users of our anti-censorship tools,” Xia said. “From one million of our users, if everyday, they send it to 10 of their friends then quickly it's going to get to everyone.”
“It's a new area the regime extends to,” said Xia. “So now they have access to all the information on personal computers.”
Green Dam threatens to give the Chinese regime unprecedented control over the Internet. The software especially targets “Falun Gong” and the Epoch Times editorial series “Nine Commentaries on the Communist Party,” in addition to pornography.
“Chinese people are very angry about it,” said Xia. The software will scare people into self-censorship, he said. “Without doing anything, they will have software sitting on their computer saying 'we are watching everything.'”
Xia said U.S. companies Dell and Hewlett Packard have been asked by the regime to have Green Dam pre-installed on all computers made in the U.S. and sent to China. “I think this is a big insult to the human rights values in the free world,” he said.
“Green Dam-Youth Escort” was developed by Jinhui Computer Systems Inc. and Dazheng Language Process Inc., with the former in charge of image filtration and the later keyword filtration. In 2005, Dazheng was involved in the development of a “secret files intercept system” for the Chinese army. According to its Web site, Jinhui has worked with both the Chinese army and the public security ministry.