China to start blocking internet telephony

China has moved to block internet users in that country from using Skype, the popular Voice over IP (VoIP) application.

Atlanta-based Verso Technologies confirmed it had reached an agreement with a "tier-one" carrier in China to provide the country with technology that blocks calls made over the internet, although it gave few details.

"Verso does have an executed trial agreement with a tier-one carrier in China. However, at the request of the customer, we will maintain their anonymity until the trial is completed," said Monty Bannerman, CEO, Verso Technologies. "Verso has been doing business in China for more than ten years and we understand the market and its regulatory environment. In addition, it has been widely reported that Skype technology is illegal in China,"

The statement followed reports in the Beijing Business Today newspaper last September. The publication reported that China Telecom, the country's largest telco, was working to block internet phone calls due to losses caused by the free services. Trials of the blocking technology were taking place in Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen and Guangzhou.

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