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Govt Unblocks 4 Out Of 32 Websites–Dailymotion, Github, Weebly & Vimeo. [Details]

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Blocking of Websites Image

The Department of Telecommunication & IT had, in an order dated 17th December, banned 32 websites in India citing Terrorism as the reason. Most of the websites blocked were basically sites that allowed copy-pasting of content anonymously and  sharing it with the world. The reason – these websites allowed people to anonymously post Jihadi propaganda on their platform.

Interestingly, the list contained website hosting and creation platforms like Weebly , hpage, iPage and video hosting platforms like Dailymotion and Vimeo. The list also included popular software repositories like Github and Sourceforge.

Here is the complete order given by Ministry of Communication & IT to all the Internet Services providers.

————————————————

Government of India

Ministry of Communication & IT

Department of Telecommunications

Sanchar Bhawan, 20, Ashoka Road, New Delhi-110001

(Data Services Cell)

No: 813-7/25/2011-DS (Vol-IV)

Dated: 17/12/2014

To

All Internet Service Licensees

Sub: Direction to block Internet Website.

Under the powers conferred by Section 69A of the Information Technology Act, 2000 and under the Information Technology (Procedures and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of Information by Public) Rules, 2009, it has been decided to immediately block the access to the following **32 URLs**:

01) https://justpaste.it/

02) http://hastebin.com

03) http://codepad.org

04)

05) https://pastee.org

06) http://paste2.org

07) http://slexy.org

08) http://paste4btc.com/

09) http://0bin.net

10) http://www.heypasteit.com

11)

12) http://atnsoft.com/textpaster

13) https://archive.org

14) http://www.hpage.com

15) http://www.ipage.com/

16) http://www.webs.com/

17) http://www.weebly.com/

18) http://www.000webhost.com/

19) https://www.freehosting.com

20) https://vimeo.com/

21) http://www.dailymotion.com/

22) http://pastebin.com

23) https://gist.github.com

24) http://www.ipaste.eu

25) https://thesnippetapp.com

26) https://snipt.net

27) http://tny.cz (Tinypaste)

28) https://github.com (gist-it)

29) http://snipplr.com/

30) http://termbin.com

31) http://www.snippetsource.net

32) https://cryptbin.com

  1. All the Internet Service licensees are accordingly directed to immediately block the access to above URLs.
  1. The compliance be submitted immediately, failing which the Department may initiate action under Rule 12 of the Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking of Access of information by Public) Rules, 2009.

———————————

If you see the list above except for Sourceforge, all other url’s got a blanket ban on their websites rather than just the incriminating url.

We tried accessing a few urls and while some threw up blank pages, some of them were still accessible to us while writing this report. It seems that ISPs are still in the process of blocking these websites.

Why This Ban?

The websites that were banned essentially contained material about Areeb Majid, and ISIS member who was arrested by National Investigative Agency along with 3 others from North Karnataka’s Bhatkal region. These websites were used by ISIS to attract Indian youth to join their forces. Some of the websites also contained anti-national content.

BJP’s IT Cell National Head Arvind Gupta also said in a tweet that the websites have been blocked on the advice of ATS as they were carrying material from the ISIS.

Govt Unblocks 4 out of 32 websites

According to IANS, the Government decided to unblock four websites after they gave assurances to the government that they will not allow pasting on Jihadi propaganda. The sites that were unblocked were Website creation & hosting site Weebly.com, Video hosting platforms Vimeo.com & Dailymotion.com and software repository gist.github.com.

The Government has also said that they will remove blocks for other websites after they get the assurances from others.

How Does a Website Block Happen?

The much talked about Section 69A of the IT act grants power to central Government to issue directions for blocking of public access to any information through any computer resource. Simply put, Government can block any website under certain conditions.

While it may seem that website block happens indiscriminately, there is a method to the madness. Govt has come up with procedure on how a website can be blocked. Here is the Flow Chart that explains it.

[Click on the picture to zoom]

Website Blocking[Source: CIS]

  1. Bhavin says

    the weebly page still shows ‘blocked by DOT/High court’… What about lacs of people who were using this platform to do business???

  2. […] Without going into details of existing (very abstract) internet laws, a site can be currently banned in India, if they are breaking any laws or are in someway are a threat to national security. Last year Government had banned 32 sites including come well known sites like Vimeo, Dailymotion, Github and others, and they were restored back as soon as Govt requested changes were made. […]

  3. Vinay Kumar Saini says

    Well this is non sense, How come you can block the whole engine of few of it’s users are doing wrong stuff. Just delete the accounts of such users.

    If the water coming out of river is dirty then put a filter rather than blocking the river.

    This is simply shows the mind set and the IT awareness that our so called care takers are having.

    Please God Save India….

  4. jameson says

    The youtube also contain how to make bomb how to use weapon and all the anti social elements are taken place in all video site
    so they want to block all site and they also band internet to India modi sargar

  5. Jagannath Nayak says

    May I know why they are banning lot of useful website. I don’t like it. Plz don’t do this.

  6. Pravin says

    The blocked sites such as weebly is taking time to unblock. The ISP are making a hash of it. There is no communication down the line and effectively the sites cannot be used except by the ISP at their offices

  7. […] start with, I must admit that you have tried your best to ruin this New Year with your ridiculous decision of banning 32 websites, citing terror threat. Although some good sense prevailed and you decided to unblock 4 websites, […]

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