Current methods/tools against States’ Internet-blocking/slowdowns for censorship (2020-08-15)

Over the recent years there has been a resurgence of draconian State blocking/slowdowns of Internet across the world as a method to prevent the people from public debate, sharing information on the situation where they are both with other locals and the world, as well as to prevent locals from organizing protests against unjust rule and similar.
On some occasions States have for those purposes blocked all or parts of the Internet for months or even several years. Thousands of independent news media organizations that refused to let their journalism become tightly ruled propaganda outlets for the current rulers have permanently had all access blocked from within the country they’re located in and do provide their crucial society function of journalism regarding.
Sometimes these State communication sabotage policies take not just the form of complete communications blackout, but may include less obvious methods such as throttling the traffic so that it still exists, but becomes practically unusable.

It is therefore of utmost importance to share information on how to circumvent these harmful censorship policies as widely as possible.

These free of cost options have been verified with people IN areas subjected to State censorship as working recently:

ProtonVPN has a free of cost mode that should be more than enough for any average user and is motivated by anti-censorship. Works on Linux/Windows/Android/Routers/MacOS/iPhone/iPad.
RiseupVPN, the newish Bitmask-based VPN which was previously named Riseup Black.
Calyx VPN is similar to RiseupVPN, with same technologies but different addresses, so may be useful if Riseup has already been blocked.
Tor Browser. Also other Tor-based solutions like Tails and Whonix of course, but Tor Browser is a good cross-platform start. Tor is however a bit slow and triggers so many CAPTCHAs that use may even become practically impossible.
WARP, the new VPN from CloudFlare. May be difficult for dictatorships to block, as CloudFlare is (unfortunately) a core component of extremely many major commercial/government web-based services nowadays.

For local messaging when/if Internet Service Providers (ISPs) shut down networking completely:
Briar has been shown to work.
FireChat claims to fill a similar function, but I have not had it verified as working there, now.

Instant-messaging tools with high level of general trust, but which require centralized infrastructure to work:
Signal. Works on most computers and phones, but uses mobile phone numbers as user identifiers, which are easily traceable by any State and relies on centralized servers for message delivery. Open source.
Wire. Like above, based on same protocol, but uses e-mail addresses as user identifiers and therefore is much more difficult to trace, as temporary/dedicated e-mail accounts can be used. Open source.
Wickr. Similar to above. Very limited open source.
Silence. Completely SMS-based encryption, as Signal was, developed from Signal’s old source code. Useful when there is no mobile data-traffic, but only SMS. Open source.

Other Internet-blocking/slowdown circumvention tools that I have not verified to be working right now, but may be good to keep in mind if the previous stop working (Not an endorsement. Make sure to check anonymization, logging, State-collaboration, etc as needed before use):
• The “cryptofree” or “cryptofree WireGuard” by the generally well regarded cryptostorm.
Mada19 Outline [in Arabic]

As the State combines the blockings/slowdowns with arbitrary physical searches of people in the streets and in homes, wherein finding one of the above mentioned tools leads to arrest, it is probably a good idea to hide their presence.
For Android, the two first methods here for example may work well.

Documents, videos, software installers, etc can be hidden in encrypted container-files and then placing those files in some obscure place that would not likely be inspected during a regular search, such as in a different program’s data-directories and similar.
Encrypted container-files can be created and opened using VeraCrypt (almost all desktop/laptop computers) or EDS (Android).

Using well known functions like “Samsung Secure Folder” or similar from other major manufacturers is probably NOT a good idea, as they are well known enough to have had passwords demanded under threat of fines or worse during arbitrary searches.

As a probably last resort, there is an analog modem number still available in Sweden, which I have not verified myself due to lack of hardware, but a modem answers and using it did work last I heard.
Sweden modem phone number: +46708671911 (username “toto”, password “toto”)

Two more analog modem phone numbers that I have not verified at all if they still work are:
The Netherlands modem phone number: +31205350535 (username “xs4all”, password “xs4all”)
France modem phone number: +33172890150 (username “toto”, password “toto”)

Last, to state the obvious:
Absolutely do NOT rely on Facebook (which is also e.g. WhatsApp and Instagram) for dictatorship-banned communications, as they have cooperated with dictatorships’ “lawful court orders” in the past leading to capture, torture and/or executions and furthermore publicly admitted to being co-responsible for genocide and enabling imprisonment of people for being homosexual through silent automated “interests” categorization being used as court evidence.
Better platforms to consider are for example Riseup’s Crabgrass, Mastodon and PeerTube.

• Revision 2019-11-03: Added CalyxVPN and cryptostorm’s cryptofree VPN, because they should already have been in there.
• Revision 2020-07-01: Added ProtonVPN, as I’ve now tested them for several months and approve.
• Revision 2020-08-15: Rewrite to make the text more generalized. No changes in actual methods, etc.