Chinese Man Jailed for 5 Years for Running Unauthorized VPN Service. While continuing its crackdown on services that help Chinese citizens to bypass Great Firewall, Chinese authorities have sentenced a man to five-and-a-half years in prison for selling a VPN service without obtaining a proper license from the government.
Earlier this year, the Chinese government announced a ban on “unauthorized” VPN services, making it mandatory for companies to obtain an appropriate license from the government in order to operate in the country.
Citizens in China usually make use of VPN and Proxy services to bypass the country’s Great Firewall, also known as the Golden Shield project, which employs a variety of tricks to censor the Internet in the country.
The Great Firewall project already blocked access to more than 150 out of the world’s 1,000 top websites, which includes Google, Facebook, Twitter, Dropbox, Tumblr, and The Pirate Bay in the country.
Xiangyang was also fined 500,000 yuan ($76,000) by the court in the southern region of Guangxi, according to an announcement from China’s Procuratorate Daily on Wednesday.
The report also said he was convicted of collecting “illegal revenue” of 792,638 yuan ($120,500) from his unlicensed business.