On the new year eve, the Indian government started blocking out as many as 32 websites including GitHub and Sorceforge.net for security reasons. As per the IT Cell, these websites are having content related to pro-terrorist group ISIS, and a failure to co-operate in the investigations have led to the country wide blockage. All of the Internet service providers in the country have been advised to block access to these websites.
Arvind Gupta, the head of IT Cell, BJP Tweeted: “The websites that have been blocked were based on an advisory by Anti Terrorism Squad, and were carrying Anti India content from ISIS. The sites that have removed objectionable content and/or cooperated with the on going investigations are being unblocked.”
The decision has received a major outcry from the citizens on the social networking websites. However, the IT cell officials said that some of the websites will be unblocked as they are aligning with the investigation.
According to an IT cell agent, these websites have some of the dangerous codes on this planet. They can be used with the several sophisticated tools to cause damage to any type of online service. However, what’s important to know is that there are several other websites, including exploit-db, which provide codes and exploits to do that. Pastebin, GitHub and Sourceforge.net cannot only be blamed to have such type of codes.
Indian government took the help of section 69A of the Information technology Act (2000) and Information Technology (Procedure and Safeguards for Blocking for Access of Information by Public) Rules (“Blocking Rules”) to restrict access to these websites.
There have been an outcry from the Internet activists, and mostly the developers for blocking the access to the GitHub. Apparently, the government isn’t aware of the fact that these types of websites are in use to share and develop the code collaboratively.
GitHub has also been reported to approach the Indian government to restore its services in the country. “We’re aware of reports of connectivity issues in India. We’re looking into it, and will update with more information when we have it,” a Github spokesperson said.