China cybersec legislation inches towards law

Controversial regulation gets second reading

China has moved ahead with new Internet censorship security laws, with its upcoming cybersecurity bill getting a second reading in the country's legislature.

Official news agency Xinhua says under the law, network operators will have to “comply with social and business ethics and accept supervision by both government and the public”.

The law also calls on the government to be more forceful in responding to security threats from abroad, the Xinhua report says.

Some lawmakers have asked for the law to be expanded to mandate better security in network systems and products.

If the law comes into effect, it will also mandate that citizens' personal data and important business data be stored onshore. Anyone wanting to move that data overseas would face a government security evaluation.

The most recent draft of the law hasn't yet been made public, but earlier drafts gave the government sweeping powers to access and block the dissemination of information – something which was already entrenched in the so-called “great firewall”.

A translation of an earlier draft was published last year.

That draft gave the Cyberspace Administration the right to shut down Internet access during “major” security incidents. ®

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