There are a number of methods to bypass Internet filters, including software tools and protected pathways. Collectively, these are called circumvention methods and can range from simple work-arounds to complex computer programs. For instance, sometimes it is possible to access a banned Web site just by opening a copy that has been cached by a search engine, instead of trying to access it directly.
Circumvention providers are individuals or organizations that provide methods for avoiding filters on the Internet. They can be large commercial organizations that offer circumvention services for a fee or individuals or organizations that provide circumvention services for free. Circumvention providers often install software on a computer in a non-filtered location and then make connections to this computer available to those who access the Internet from a blocked location.
Circumvention users are individuals or organizations that bypass Internet filtering using circumvention technologies and usually include people who wish to access or send information from restricted locations. For instance, many Internet users want to protect their identities or activities out of a personal desire for privacy. They may also wish to avoid repercussions from authorities who restrict Internet access -- whether a disapproving parent, an employer, a copyright holder, law enforcement or a government censor.