China Boosts Gov’t Control Over Cyberspace

China Boosts Gov’t Control Over CyberspaceChina Boosts Gov’t Control Over Cyberspace

China’s legislature passed sweeping legislation on Wednesday that reinforces government controls over cyberspace, as the nation’s leaders try to address what they see as growing threats to Chinese networks and national security.

The law calls for strengthened management over the web and tougher measures against online attacks, theft of secrets and the spread of illegal or harmful information, AP reported.

It said core information technology, critical infrastructure and important systems and data must be “secure and controllable” in order to protect China’s sovereignty over its cyberspace.

The law offered no details on how China would achieve the goals, although a vast government Internet monitoring system has been in place for years.

China says it is a major target of hacking and other cyberattacks, and the ruling Communist Party has expended vast efforts in blocking online content it deems subversive or illegal.

The National Security Law, passed overwhelmingly by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, replaces a law that focused more narrowly on counter-espionage.

In addition to cyberspace, the new legislation covers a wide range of areas, including the economy, social stability, territorial integrity, the military, culture, finance, technology, the environment and food safety.

A separate anti-terrorism proposal could require network operators and service providers fighting for a share of China’s $465-billion technology market to build in “backdoors” for government surveillance, hand over encryption keys to Chinese authorities and store user data within China.