Access blocked from China - workarounds?

07/31/20
Answered - Pending Review

Hi, not sure if others are aware, but Smartsheet is not accessible from China right now.

We have a major issue with one of our global customer's Chinese employees unable to update project information in Smartsheet.

Hoping the community can help us out with some solutions.

We are finding out if they can use a VPN to access it, but lets assume they can't. What other work arounds are there.

For example - is there a way to run a Flow from Microsoft 365 tools to get updates?

Answers

  • Hello @youngdonkey ,

    It looks like you may have received a response from on of our Support Agents on July 30th.

    It does appear that a VPN/Alternative Network is the only method as of now, but please let us know if you find an Alternative Method.

    Kindest Regards

    Sean

  • youngdonkeyyoungdonkey ✭✭✭✭✭

    Ah yes they did, very helpful. Our customer says they are using a VPN, but still not able to access. They are going to try and reinstall it and see what happens.

  • youngdonkeyyoungdonkey ✭✭✭✭✭

    So we fixed this by simply creating a new account for the customer from the UK, then sending them the password.

    They got in no problem.

  • Jim FowlerJim Fowler Employee

    I'm assuming this is still through the VPN youngdonkey?

  • youngdonkeyyoungdonkey ✭✭✭✭✭

    I believe so

  • edited 12/07/20

    @Sean Morgan | Popping on here. I have also personally been on calls and seen this happen to users in Japan, in Hong Kong, in Taiwan, and using with users on VPNs in China.

    It seems to happen with the initial user log on or password reset. Users that are already established don't seem to have any issue getting logged into Smartsheet in China. I wonder if in your zeal to limit spam accounts that perhaps the captcha process is flagging Asian IP addresses as malicious.

  • The majority of our employee-base is in China so this has been a HUGE issue for us. The problem is not accessing the site, per se. They do not even need to use a vpn. The problem is that the account registration/confirmation capche that was recently added is a Google capche--and Chinese users cannot submit this capche since they cannot access Google.

    Smartsheet--This needs to be resolved if you want to continue supporting global corporations. ASAP

  • @Jenny O'Donnell

    This isn't a Smartsheet issue, this is a Chinese government issue and restrictions placed on internet access. Smartsheet can spend all kinds of money, but they won't have enough to beat the cyberwall that China puts on their citizens. If Google can't break down that wall, Smartsheet sure isn't going to. You do business in China, this is something you must realize, is a huge impediment to deal with.

  • @Jenny O'Donnell

    My company ran into the same. My workaround is to ask each user in China to send me the pwd rest link so I can reset their pwd outside of China then email the pwd to them.

    It's quite a headache for the Admin though if you have large group of users in China.

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