VPNs in Xinjiang

All about China. Expert: bwv812
Renangreinert
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2019 6:27 am
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VPNs in Xinjiang

Postby Renangreinert » Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:20 am

Hi everybody,

Has anyone had the smartphones searched when going to Xinjiang? Do they delete the VPNs?
I am in Mongolia now, and I am planning to cross the west board between Mongolia and China, and then head to Tadjikistan. But I will need vpn to access the Tadjikistan e-visa website (the payment screen opens my bank website, and it is blocked in China).
Also, if someone has crossed that border recentrly, I would love to hear about the experience :)

Thanks!
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Robinosaurus!
Posts: 10
Joined: Mon Jun 17, 2019 2:25 pm
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Re: VPNs in Xinjiang

Postby Robinosaurus! » Tue Jul 09, 2019 10:28 am

Cycled Xinjiang couple of weeks ago. I removed my VPN from the phone homescreen and renamed it from "PIA VPN" to just "PIA". Nobody noticed, they only looked through WeChat, emails and pictures (but they do look between 0 and 5 times per day, definitely closer looks at border crossings in and out).

PIA doesn't work in Xinjiang, ExpressVPN did last week but was temperamental and may have been blocked by now. Expect poorer performance than you're used to. Only use on wifi or your sim may be blocked. If you use it on a phone with wechat, even on wifi, then your wechat account may be blocked.
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Renangreinert
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Jun 18, 2019 6:27 am
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Re: VPNs in Xinjiang

Postby Renangreinert » Thu Jul 11, 2019 3:47 pm

Perfect, thank you for the tips!
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Lovetheworld
Posts: 131
Joined: Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:27 am
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Re: VPNs in Xinjiang

Postby Lovetheworld » Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:29 am

Why not already get your Tajikistan e-visa? To be on the safe side.

Once Chinese customs touch your phone I would consider it as "lost". Yes you can still use it, but there is probably some sort of spyware installed, and your VPNs might be gone. So I would, maybe even before but at least after China, reset the whole thing to factory defaults. And change all your passwords.
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rhinomaxil
Posts: 2
Joined: Sat Aug 24, 2019 6:45 am
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Re: VPNs in Xinjiang

Postby rhinomaxil » Sat Aug 24, 2019 6:51 am

Hi all,

I will go to Xinjiang in a few days, crossing the border from Mongolia, and I was wondering what was the final word on VPN use there. It is still a bit unclear to me reading the posts above and other threads on caravanistan.

Has someone been using VPNs in Xinjiang? If I have one on my phone, could it be a reason for them not to let me in at the border? Without a VPN, how is it possible to keep in touch with family and friends abroad?

Thanks a lot for your help!
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