According to Reporters Without Borders (RWB), 2011 was the "deadliest year" yet for "netizens".
The body said that nearly 200 arrests were made on internet campaigners last year, which is a 31 per cent increase from 2010.
China, followed by Vietnam and Iran, currently hold the largest number of "netizens" in prison.
RWB said the Arab Spring phenomenon was a game changer this year. It changed the face of internet freedom, the report said.
Image: Indian protestors hold placards and flowers outside the residence of Union Minister for Human Resource Development and Communications, Kapil Sibal, as they protest against government plans to censor the internet. (Photo credit: AP)