The US government has undergone all kinds of hack attacks over the past few months. While nothing official has been stated, a lot of fingers are being pointed at China and Chinese hackers.
Some state that the Chinese government must be behind all of the hacks while others believe that the hackers are working alone from various Chinese Internet office and companies. Whatever the truth may be, China doesn’t want international problems in the form of hacking accusations, so the country is attempting to do something about it.
Whether China is truly concerned about fighting with foreign countries or whether the country just wants to put on a nice show remains to be seen, but the fact is that Chinese police are set to monitor Internet company offices. The other reason for this police presence is that there’s a stringent and very serious set of Internet rules in place in China, and some web companies that operate within China appear to be breaking those rules.
By placing government police forces inside of various web offices, the Chinese government hopes to have better and complete control over what those companies do - including what is and isn’t published or accessible to the masses. The police presence will be added to some of the country’s biggest web offices including Alibaba, which operates from China. What exactly does the government want from these web companies?
The Chinese government has a clear mandate when it comes to what web companies can and can’t do. The set of rules that the government will be enforcing include forcing web companies to store user data in China, to willingly give user data to Chinese government officials, and stop any anonymity that happens online through these companies. In other words, the Chinese government wants more control over what its citizens are doing online, and it will bring in police forces in order to ensure that things never get out of control.
Needless to say, the fact that the Chinese government is cracking down on what Internet users and web companies alike can and cannot do inside of China is somewhat frightening. It’s no secret that China has strict Internet policies, but this brings those law and rules to a whole new level. Any company operating in China must adhere to the government’s Internet policies, and not meeting those terms will likely result in jail time in addition to seizure of the company’s goods and profits.
A Darker Day
The Chinese government already makes it mandatory for web companies to carefully monitor any user activity, and remove any comments or sites that are anti-government. Seemingly, this kind of control is not enough to satisfy the government, and further crackdowns are now going to be in place.
This should be a lesson to foreign companies thinking of setting up shop in China, and also a good lesson to anyone using a Chinese web company for any reason. Clearly, no data is safe in China, and no web company is immune to government seizure and control.