How Cambodia’s Internet gateway will harm the Internet

Cambodia should evaluate the impact of its plans to route all Internet traffic through a “national Internet gateway” on the Internet.

While the deadline for Internet service providers and telecommunications companies to connect to the gateway had been set for 16 February 2022, the plans have reportedly been delayed to an unspecified date.

But the delay does nothing to change the nature of this gateway—it only pushes worrying effects off into the future. In fact, in a newly published Internet Impact Brief, we find that the gateway would undermine critical elements that make the Internet an open, globally connected, secure, and trustworthy resource for everyone.

The national gateway will manage all local and international Internet traffic—both incoming and outgoing. According to the decree, it aims to “strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of the national revenue collection” and support the “protection of national security, and preservation of social order, culture, and national tradition.” Much of the substance of the decree, however, is undefined and unspecified.

In full:

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