The government of India may have quietly banned the cross-platform, open-source VLC media player website due to a “China connection,” as a hacking group based in Beijing combines compromised VLC Media Player with malware to hijack machines.
Reason Behind the Ban in India
The Cicada victims can be located in India, the US, Canada, Israel, Hong Kong, and several other nations, according to cyber-security analysts at Symantec. The Cicada organization attacked numerous nations in April, focusing on prominent victims.
The Symantec researchers discovered that the attackers from China installed malware on infected devices using VLC Media Player. All of the country’s main internet service providers have blocked the VLC Media Player. However, any VPN service can be used to access the video streaming provider on a phone or laptop.
It may be downloaded through the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store as well. The government has not yet provided a formal explanation for why access to the VLC website has been limited in the nation.
Software was Banned a Long Time Ago
The restriction reportedly went into force on February 13 of this year, more than five months ago. The majority of users were uninformed of the restriction, though, because neither the corporation nor the government made any announcements about it before it took effect.
User Gagandeep Sapra recently noted in a tweet that when users attempt to access the media player website, they are met with the notice “The website has been blocked as per the order of Ministry of Electronics and Information technology under IT Act, 2000.”
In response to users’ questions about why the program was restricted in the nation, VideoLAN stated in a tweet that the Indian government has forbidden it. Additionally, in response to a Right to Information (RTI) request made in June of this year by the NGO SFLC.in, which promotes digital freedom, the Ministry of Electronics and IT stated that it has no information regarding videolan.org. Information regarding the restriction of the VLC media player was sought in the RTI petition.
About the VLC Media Player
The VideoLAN project is responsible for creating the media player. DVD-Video, Video CD, and streaming protocols are only a few of the audio and video compression techniques and file types that VLC supports. It can convert multimedia files and transmit media via computer networks.
The modular structure of this media player, like that of the majority of multimedia frameworks, makes it simpler to add modules or plugins for new file formats, codecs, interfaces, or streaming techniques.