Which Countries Are the Worst-Rated for Censorship and Surveillance in the World?

Aliza Vigderman Gabe Turner Chief Editor
Last Updated on Jun 22, 2020
By Aliza Vigderman & Gabe Turner on Jun 22, 2020

We’re living in the Information Age. Today, you can connect with anyone virtually anywhere in the world, instantly. The Internet is a vehicle for everything from news and commerce to entertainment and communication, to name only a few topics. When Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web, he insisted it be released as free technology that anyone could have access to and use with no patent or royalties due, according to his website. What a gift to mankind! But is Berners-Lee’s vision really the case today? Let’s find out together.

Is The Internet Really Free?

Today, Berners-Lee’s vision and the very fabric of the Internet itself are being threatened. Many countries around the world censor and even ban certain websites that they believe their citizens shouldn’t have access to. The reasons range from political to moral to religious. However, many people believe that Internet censorship and surveillance are dangerous steps in the wrong direction. Of course, there are many types of Internet censorship and surveillance, some more intrusive than others. Let’s take a closer look at censorship and surveillance by country.

The Worst-Rated Countries For Censorship And Surveillance

Which Countries Are the Worst-Rated for Censorship and Surveillance in the World? - SecurityBaron.com - Infographic

Contrary to popular belief, it’s not just a select few oppressive countries that engage in censorship and Internet surveillance. Countries all over the world have these types of programs set up and they do so for a variety of reasons. For example, government Internet surveillance is often a necessary strategy for intelligence and national security agencies. To use an example in the United States, Edward Snowden leaked the questionable activities of the NSA to the media in 2013, causing a global debate on surveillance.


This map and data visualization reveals which countries are the worst-rated for censorship and surveillance around the world to give you a clear view of how some countries’ policies stack up against others. Additionally, we’ve marked which countries have been identified as “Enemies of the Internet” by the international organization Reporters Without Borders. Where does your country fall on the list?