A Startup's Tool Helps Evade Iran's Censors, for Now

An Iranian woman surfs the internet at a cyber cafe in central Tehran on the day after Iran officially launched its cyber police unit. Photograph by Atta Kenare/AFP/Getty Images

In early 2011, David Gorodyansky watched the Arab Spring unfold on his company’s server logs. “We came into the office, we’d see that our usage in Egypt went from 100,000 to 1 million overnight,” says Gorodyansky, co-founder of AnchorFree. The 30-employee Mountain View (Calif.) startup makes free virtual private network (VPN) software which Internet users install on their computers to secure their connections and reach websites blocked by censors.

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