Privacy Protection

I have been through some bothering from the ISP who inject some AD(commercial) code to all the website I am surfing from the cell phone networking, which bring me up something about privacy protection in daily working for all visitors if you are sensitive about this issue.

This is something like a best practicing suggestion, I am not gonna talk about the systematic scheme or the law practicing of that in much detail, also the technical detail you would probably not care about.

In general, all the networking traffic is monitored by authority for the reason of national security or something else which ordinary person never give a hoot about it, whatever in China or the rest of the other world, so be comfy if you do not have a criminal intention or activity. what you should pay attention to is the commercial usage of your personal information and scam via your leaked personal information.On the other hand, for the internet commercial, pushing amusement is see around everywhere, only if you connected to any of the access point via cell phone networking or cable networking, sometimes the ISP will brutally inject commercial code into all the website you visit (I screen grab a webpage, see the little blue circle in the right conner?), in most cases, people can not tell which commercial is from the website itself or the ISP (Http-session Hijacking), so ISP is loaded, commercial corporation also earn lots of money, everybody is on the gravy train except the end user who will suffer the terrible surfing experience.(you can not change ISP, I mean you got only one real ISP.)


Figure: Injection of Commercial Menu by ISP – Blue Icon

 

So what are you gonna do?

Cell Phone

1.If you are a short term visitor, just roaming you phone in China, although you are in the local mobile networking, your privacy is relative secure, but the concession you have to made is the expensive roaming charge which in detail depends on where are you from. and local ISP usually can not or will not interfere with or inject code to these bunch of people.

2.Do not connect your phone to any of public Wifi except in the branch of your local corporation office which you have the trust and got more robust WIFI security policy. you know why, one of the reason among thousands is some access point will steal or sniffer your MAC address and personal information even you are not connect to the WIFI in broadcasting range and push the medical commercial to you based on your surfing preference (The system is conduced by Baidu DOT com, which is a google like search engine), as I know, latest iOS version will send a fake Mac address for any of the sniffer activity.

3.It is probably not possible for a long term visitor to roam his phone all the time, usually you have to buy a new SIM card from the local wireless vendor, China Mobile and China Unicom is the common choice for this, and your passport would be necessary to this applying process. what you should know is most of the phone number you may choose is probably the reactivated number, which means someone use it before and abandon it for 2-3years, the potential risk for you is you will be receiving couples of junk call for peddling or scam everyday. So if you can make some kind of communication with the clerk, ask him or her for a fresh new number which is never been used. that will better for keeping the junk call away if you do not leave call number everywhere at will.

4.Do not register your phone number on any of the local company website except you know them well or absolutely necessary.

5.If you can tell some of the commercial on your phone when you are surfing is from ISP, just go to the website of this ISP, filing a online complain to request removal of that commercial, usually it will work in couple days. Do not call the ISP, all the call agent will not admit of that fact or just don’t know about it, I guess the reason behind this could be the precaution of any recorded evidence for litigation.

Cable LAN for PC/Mac

Leave this part if you are a linux user or IT expert, you could handle it just fine, for most ordinary people, if you traveled here for business, LAN inside your corporation is relative secure for the sensitive information transformation in most cases such as paypal payment.

1.For visitors, Hotel wired networking is usually bad and not secure for any sensitive information transformation, use a trusted proxy or Tunnel technology to encrypt your traffic is always good, the same goes to hotel wifi. I don’t think there will be much more malicious attack from the Hotel themselves , but usually the security breach in hotel can be exploited by others guests.

2.Public WIFI is risky except for the multinational corporation public store.

3.If you need to download any of the software for you PC/MAC, try to go the official app store or the official site, Do not download from local software website, most of the software are patched with backdoor or malicious code for their own benefit.

3.Try to use Bing.com instead of baidu DOT com, even if you can not access google.com, baidu DOT com would probably(not always) lead you to the site with malicious html code inside who will steal your information without your attention.

4.Unlike in Europe, there is The Cookie Law out there to protect the privacy of the individual, without your consent, website can not collect your personal browser information on your computer or phone, unfortunately, here, is the paradise of the merchant, they can get all the information you are interested and push the exact commercial to you when you are using any of your client equipment, no matter which app you are using. For this, you should probably be getting used to it soon, or you have to use the private browser mode every day which is sometimes not convenient.

In short, trying to get all you need or service from the english website is relative good and simple choice for privacy protection, but you have to bear with the low speed connection and interference of the traffic sometime.

update:2018.3.27

Deliberately AD injection by ISP. left is accessing from outside China, and the right is accessing from China. See the annoying floating AD!

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