Anti-censorship campaigners have found a novel way of scaling the Great Firewall of China, printing QR codes on bank notes which when scanned take people to a site where they can download software that bypasses the country's Internet access restrictions.
According to the Epoch Times, a woman called Mrs Wu recently noticed something odd about the four one yuan notes in her change at a supermarket in Wuhan. The notes all had QR codes stamped in the top right hand corner, along with the words "Scan and download software to break the Internet firewall."
Intrigued, Mrs Wu took the notes to the Wuhan Evening News and from there the story went national, even making state mouthpiece the People's Daily and prompting more recipients of QR code-stamped money to come forward.
When the code is scanned with a mobile phone, it directs the user to an Amazon cloud link where software can be downloaded to bypass China's strict Internet censorship.
According to the Epoch Times, the QR codes can be downloaded by anyone from a site owned by Dynamic Internet Technology, the firm behind Freegate firewall-busting software.
It is not known who took the step of using cash to spread the word, although the paper notes that long-persecuted practitioners of the Falun Gong spiritual discipline have a history of putting messages on money.