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China Blocks Access to Google’s Gmail as Ban Escalates

Posted In Cyber Security, NEWS, Technology - By admin on Wednesday, December 31st, 2014 With No Comments »
A pedestrian walks past the building housing the Google Inc. China headquarters in Beijing, China. While Gmail’s website had already been blocked, the latest restrictions cut off users of third-party services including the Mail app built into Apple Inc. iPhones and iPads.

A pedestrian walks past the building housing the Google Inc. China headquarters in Beijing, China. While Gmail’s website had already been blocked, the latest restrictions cut off users of third-party services including the Mail app built into Apple Inc. iPhones and iPads.

China blocked access to Google Inc. (GOOG)’s e-mail service through third-party applications, adding Gmail to the list of services from the search company banned in the world’s largest Internet market.

Traffic volume for Gmail dropped about 85 percent on Dec. 26 before falling further the following day and remains near zero today, according to data posted on Google’s Transparency Report page.

While Gmail’s website had already been blocked, the latest restrictions cut off users of third-party services including the Mail app built into Apple Inc. (AAPL) iPhones and iPads. Those e-mails can no longer be accessed while messages sent to and from Gmail to Chinese domestic e-mail services haven’t been bounced back.

“We’ve checked and there’s nothing wrong on our end,” Google said in a statement.

The Cyberspace Administration of China didn’t reply to faxed questions about the Gmail blockage.

Users routinely skirt the so-called Great Firewall that censors China’s Internet by deploying a Virtual Private Network, a strategy that currently works for accessing Gmail e-mails.

Google search and map functions have already been blocked in China as authorities limit access to foreign news and tensions escalate over cybersecurity and hacking.

Google will eventually return to China, as will Facebook Inc., China’s government-run Global Times wrote in a Dec. 16 editorial. China is becoming stronger and the scope of sensitive information will be narrowed, it wrote at the time.

The editorial has since been removed from the Global Times website and other websites that had reposted it.

 

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