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China warns of ‘double standard’ in protecting country’s cyber security

(Global Times)    08:46, December 17, 2015
China warns of ‘double standard’ in protecting country’s cyber security
Chinese President Xi Jinping delivers a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the Second World Internet Conference in Wuzhen Town, east China's Zhejiang Province, Dec. 16, 2015. [Photo/Xinhua]

Cyberspace should not be turned into a global battleground: Xi

China is stepping up its crackdown on cybercrimes and Internet terrorism, calling for more international cooperation under a universal standard.

Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday said there should be no double standard in safeguarding cyber security.

"We cannot just have security for one or some countries, leaving the rest insecure. [No one country should] seek so-called 'absolute security' for itself at the expense of the security of others," Xi said in a keynote speech at the opening ceremony of the World Internet Conference in Wuzhen, East China's Zhejiang Province.

Xi said that a secure, stable and prosperous cyberspace was crucial for all countries, especially with the threat of war, terrorism and other crimes. Cyberspace, he said, should not be turned into a battleground for nations to wrestle with one another, and still less a hotbed for crimes.

"All nations should join hands to curb the abuse of information technology, oppose Internet eavesdropping and cyber attack, and oppose cyberspace arms race," Xi said.

He said nations should cooperate to prevent the misuse of cyberspace for crimes such as terrorism, obscenity, drug trafficking, money laundering and gambling.

Analysts believe Xi's speech refers to the unfair treatment experienced by China.

"There are two types of double standard: one in business and the other in national security," Tang Lan, a cyber studies expert at the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

Chinese companies such as Huawei and ZTE encountered numerous obstacles when they tried to enter the US market, whereas US tech firms such as Cisco and Microsoft faced fewer difficulties in China. On the other hand, the US government has been actively developing its cyber attack capabilities, but other countries which dare to increase their cyber defense capabilities would be called "hackers" by the US, Tang said.

Relations between China and the US were strained this year over cyber security issues as US officials accused China of several hacking cases, including a breach of information on US government workers. China's foreign ministry has repeatedly dismissed such accusations.

Cyber security was also one of the main topics during Xi's visit to the US in September. The two governments eventually reached a "common understanding" to curb cyber security and cyber espionage against each other.

'Cleaning the Internet'

In a sub-forum on cyber security in Wuzhen on Wednesday, Liu Xinyun, director of the cyber security defense bureau of the Ministry of Public Security, said China has arrested 2,703 people for Internet crimes and investigated 947 hacking-related cases in 2015.

The country has established a hotline for tips and information on cybercrimes, setting up over 200 labs across the country to process data related to Internet crimes, he said.

In July, China launched a six-month campaign code-named "Cleaning the Internet." The campaign targets hacking attacks and Internet scams beside cleaning online information of pornography, explosives, firearms and gambling.

The Ministry of Public Security said in August that it had arrested about 15,000 people for cybercrimes and investigated 7,400 cases over a timeframe that the statement did not identify.

Liu also said China has stepped up its crackdown on Internet terrorism, but failed to provide any details.

His statement corresponds with a speech given by Xinjiang Party chief Zhang Chunxian on Tuesday. Zhang said the Xinjiang government will use technology to destroy channels that terrorists outside of China use to infiltrate the country and communicate with terror groups inside.

Luo Fuyong, director of the Xinjiang Internet Information Office, wrote in an essay earlier this month saying that his office has been exploring new ways to counter extremist ideas online, and has launched several campaigns to cleanse the Internet of terrorist content.

Luo also called the Internet "the main battleground for ideological struggles," which is an "extremely important work" for the Communist Party of China. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor:Liang Jun,Bianji)

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