24,344GB data transferred per second.

2,400,000 emails sent every second.

There are 3 billion internet users in the world – 8 times more than in 20001

Users of large internet services and technologies3

Percentage of population that have internet coverage (internet penetration rates)

Total internet economy2

$8 trillion in 2011 Growing by 10% a year.

Bigger than the economy of Spain or Canada – includes online purchases, advertising, investment in servers, software, communications systems.

Laws and conventions


In 2012 an extension to include online media was adopted by 47 countries including China and Russia.


Mass surveillance

$120 billion – estimated total annual surveillance budget for the ‘Five Eyes’ (alliance of intelligence operations of Australia, Britain, Canada, New Zealand/Aotearoa, US)6

$54 billion – annual surveillance budget of the US Director of National Intelligence6

$0.13 per person per day – surveillance cost per internet user6

20% UP – year-on-year increase in Australian state access to private data, without warrant7

36% of all raw information intercepted by Britain’s GCHQ was passed on to the US’s NSA8

24 – US mass surveillance programmes currently running (including Prism)9

2 million – the reported size of China’s internet police force in 201310

$110,000 – the bounty Russian authorities are offering for anyone able to crack the Tor anonymity network.11

Media freedom

What happens to media practitioners is one way of measuring what’s happening to press freedom.

Journalists in prison:12

81 in 2000

211 in 2013

Countries with most imprisoned journalists in 2013:13

Under attack 201414


Top 10 internet censored countries (2014)4

  1. North Korea
  2. Burma
  3. Cuba
  4. Saudi Arabia
  5. Iran
  6. China
  7. Syria
  8. Tunisia
  9. Vietnam
  10. Turkmenistan

Golden Shield

China has the most sophisticated content-filtering internet regime in the world. Golden Shield blocks destination IP addresses and domain names and also inspects the data being sent or received.5

  1. Internet World
  2. The
  4. Committee to Protect Journalists report
  5. Wikipedia
  6. Smarí McCarthy
  8. Privacy International accessed 1/11/2014
  9. Wikipedia
  10. BBC, ‘China employs two million microblog monitors state media say,’
  11. Russia Today
  12. Global Voices
  13. Committee for Protection of Journalists
  14. Reporters Without Borders Figures are for Jan-Nov
  15. Green Left Weekly 15 Nov 2014
  16. ABC
  17. International Federation of Journalists
  18. Global Voices