IT&Software

China passes far-reaching Internet security law

China passes far-reaching Internet security law

The Chinese government is set to adopt the Cybersecurity Law, a regressive measure that strengthens censorship, surveillance, and other controls over the Internet, Human Rights Watch said today. In addition to prohibiting individuals from using the Internet to "endanger national security, advocate terrorism or extremism, [or] propagate ethnic hatred and discrimination", article 12 of the second draft also prohibits them from "overthrowing the socialist system" and "fabricating or spreading false information to disturb economic order".

Foreign companies fear that the new law will force them to surrender intellectual property to the state and expose key vulnerabilities, making it easier for China to seize possession of foreign technology and harder for overseas companies to do business in China.

China, on Monday, passed a law to further tighten cyber security, a decision which has raised concerns that it could intensify already wide-ranging Internet censorship.

In August, more than 40 global business groups petitioned Chinese Premier Li Keqiang urging Beijing to amend what they viewed as controversial sections of the law but their actions were to no avail.

Foreign companies have strongly criticized the law, saying it will harm business and trade.

Some cybersecurity pros feel the new laws will make doing business in China more complex, Kunal Anand, co-founder and CTO of Prevoty, told SC Media.

A Human Rights Watch (HRW) spokeswoman on Monday condemned the catch-all nature of the measures.

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Broad restrictions on the flow of cross-border data provide no security benefits but would create barriers to Chinese as well as foreign companies operating in industries where data needs to be shared internationally, he said in a statement.

The law makes Internet companies into "de-facto agents of the state" according to Patrick Poon, China researcher at Amnesty International.

"The already heavily censored internet in China needs more freedom, not less", the group's China director, Sophie Richardson, wrote in a statement.

Many provisions of the law codify existing practices, including that the government can restrict internet access "in certain regions" in the event of an emergency and that network operators should demand users register with their real names. In 2014, American prosecutors charged five Chinese military officers with hacking and economic espionage against six USA companies.

"They believe that [phrases such as] secure and independent control, secure and reliable, that these are signs of trade protectionism, that they are synonymous". "If a US company detects an attack or infiltration from China, and the attack is forwarded to law enforcement within the United States and on to China to put an end to it".

Box office fraud is not a new phenomenon in China, this new law will provide a legal basis for law enforcers and help better protect the interests of the public, Shi said. But Internet control has reached new heights since President Xi Jinping assumed power in March 2013.


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