- Title: China adopts cybersecurity law in face of overseas opposition
- Date: 7th November 2016
- Summary: BEIJING, CHINA (NOVEMBER 7, 2016) (REUTERS) CHINA'S NATIONAL PEOPLE'S CONGRESS NEWS CONFERENCE STARTING MEDIA (SOUNDBITE) (Mandarin) OFFICIAL OF CHINA'S NATIONAL PEOPLE'S CONGRESS STANDING COMMITTEE, YANG HEQING, SAYING: "China is an internet power, and as one of the countries that faces the greatest internet security risks, we urgently need to establish and perfect network security and its legal system, enhance the awareness of the entire society and the level of protection of cyber security, to make our internet more secure, opener, convenient and vibrant." NEWS CONFERENCE IN PROGRESS EXTERIOR OF THE GREAT HALL OF THE PEOPLE
- Embargoed: 22nd November 2016 06:29
- Keywords: China parliament cyber security network parliament law
- Location: BEIJING, CHINA
- City: BEIJING, CHINA
- Country: China
- Topics: Lawmaking,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA00157G2MV9
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: China adopted a controversial cybersecurity law on Monday (November 7) to counter what Beijing says are growing threats such as hacking and terrorism, although the law has triggered concern from foreign business and rights groups.
The legislation, passed by China's largely rubber-stamp parliament and set to come into effect in June 2017, is an "objective need" of China as a major internet power, a parliament official said.
Overseas critics of the law argue it threatens to shut foreign technology companies out of various sectors deemed "critical", and includes contentious requirements for security reviews and for data to be stored on servers located in China.
Rights advocates also say the law will enhance restrictions on China's internet, already subject to the world's most sophisticated online censorship mechanism, known outside the country as the Great Firewall.
Yang Heqing, an official on the National People's Congress standing committee, said the internet was already deeply linked to China's national security and development.
"China is an internet power, and as one of the countries that faces the greatest internet security risks, urgently needs to establish and perfect network security legal systems," Yang told reporters at the close of a bimonthly legislative meeting.
More than 40 global business groups petitioned Chinese Premier Li Keqiang in August, urging Beijing to amend controversial sections of the law. Chinese officials have said it wouldn't interfere with foreign business interests.
Contentious provisions remained in the final draft of the law issued by the parliament, including requirements for "critical information infrastructure operators" to store personal information and important business data in China, provide unspecified "technical support" to security agencies, and pass national security reviews.
Those demands have raised concern within companies that fear they would have to hand over intellectual property or open back doors within products in order to operate in China's market.
Many of the provisions had been previously applied in practice, but their formal codification coincides with China's adoption of a series of other regulations on national security and foreign civil society groups.
The law's adoption comes amid a broad crackdown by President Xi Jinping on civil society, including rights lawyers and the media, which critics say is meant to quash dissent.
Last year, Beijing adopted a sweeping national security law that aimed to make all key network infrastructure and information systems "secure and controllable".
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