China: Foreign tech firms raise concerns on new anti-terror law, which requires them to decrypt information

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19 April 2017

China: Executives say complaining may have led to China's relenting on tougher internet security rules

Author: Sui-Lee Wee, New York Times (USA)

"As Zeal for China Dims, Global Companies Complain More Boldly", 19 Apr 2017

…In late March, a group of more than 50 American lawmakers sent a letter to the Chinese ambassador to the United States, Cui Tiankai, taking direct aim at China’s restrictions on cloud computing. They wrote that current and draft regulations would force the transfer of valuable intellectual property to Chinese companies and effectively bar foreign cloud service providers “from operating or competing fairly in China.”…James McGregor, chairman of the greater China region for…APCO Worldwide [said]... “Foreign businesses here used to be very excited about China...Now, it’s kind of a grind and a battle.”…

Still, executives say complaining can have an impact. Earlier…Mr. Obama publicly criticized proposed Chinese rules that would require technology companies to turn over encryption keys to Chinese authorities. His administration had also expressed concern about Chinese draft regulations that would require China’s financial sector buy only from “secure and controllable” suppliers, which trade groups said effectively meant Chinese companies. In both cases China relented, temporarily scrapping the banking laws and tempering the language in the antiterrorism law… [mentions Alibaba, Amazon, Microsoft & Qualcomm]

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Author: 刘珞焱, 路透

中国欧盟商会周一发布声明称,该商会对中国新反恐法仍存关切,尽管其中一些存在争议的内容最终没有包括进来。

中国第十二届全国人大常委会第十八次会议12月27日表决通过的《中华人民共和国反恐怖主义法》要求科技企业协助解密信息,但没有要求按照最初计划那样安装安全“后门”。最初的反恐法草案有项条款要求企业将服务器和用户数据留在中国,人大表决通过的最终版本没有包括该条款。

“就从(反恐法)最终版本中去掉有关要求提交加密代码以及服务器/数据本地化的表述这方面而言,欧盟商会认可这一积极进展,”声明称…未来如何在很大程度上将取决于反恐法的实施。“仍然存在对某些问题的一些关切,譬如市场准入、知识产权,以及监控、报告和审查恐怖主义内容的义务,”声明称。欧盟商会呼吁“全面及时征求公众”对中国新反恐法实施情况的看法。

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Author: 劉珞焱, 路透

中國歐盟商會周一發布聲明稱,該商會對中國新反恐法仍存關切,儘管其中一些存在爭議的內容最終沒有包括進來。

中國第十二屆全國人大常委會第十八次會議12月27日表決通過的《中華人民共和國反恐怖主義法》要求科技​​企業協助解密信息,但沒有要求按照最初計劃那樣安裝安全“後門”。最初的反恐法草案有項條款要求企業將服務器和用戶數據留在中國,人大表決通過的最終版本沒有包括該條款。

“就從(反恐法)最終版本中去掉有關要求提交加密代碼以及服務器/數據本地化的表述這方面而言,歐盟商會認可這一積極進展,”聲明稱…未來如何在很大程度上將取決於反恐法的實施。 “仍然存在對某些問題的一些關切,譬如市場准入、知識產權,以及監控、報告和審查恐怖主義內容的義務,”聲明稱。歐盟商會呼籲“全面及時徵求公眾”對中國新反恐法實施情況的看法。

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Article
27 December 2015

European chamber says still has concerns on China anti-terror law

Author: Ben Blanchard, Reuters

The European Chamber of Commerce in China still has concerns about China's new counter-terrorism law despite some of the more contentious cyber elements of it being dropped…The [new] controversial law…requires technology firms to help decrypt information, but not install security "backdoors" as initially planned. A provision in an initial draft that would require companies to keep servers and user data within China was also removed from the final law.

"The European Chamber recognises the positive developments in terms of removing the language that required the submission of encryption codes and server/data localization from the final version," it said in a statement. Much will depend on the implementation, it said. "Some concerns remain over issues such as market access, intellectual property rights, and the obligation to monitor, report and censor terrorist content," the statement said…

China's government has said companies need not fear the law, saying intellectual property rights would be respected and that many Western countries had similar laws…The law had attracted deep concern in Western capitals, not only because of worries it could violate human rights such as freedom of speech, but because of the cyber provisions…

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17 March 2015

China: US Chamber of Commerce protests security rules

Author: Doug Young, Forbes

"US Tech Firms Protest Beijing Security Rules", 9 Feb 2015

…[The latest] trend is seeing China launch new initiatives aimed at protecting its national interests…Chinese regulators are often also quick to implement new instructions from Beijing, and craft plans without thorough reviews and consideration…

…Beijing…reacted [to the Edward Snowden scandal] by assuming that foreign tech companies work hand-in-hand with their local governments...the US…government made similar assumptions…ban[ning] the import of all Chinese telecoms networking equipment from major exporters Huawei and ZTE in 2013. China has imposed several smaller but similar restrictions on foreign tech equipment sellers over the last 2 years. But the move gained momentum last month when Beijing said all foreign firms that sold networking equipment to Chinese banks would have to make their products available for government audits, and also give their source code to Beijing.

American firms…formally issu[ed] a protest letter through the US Chamber of Commerce last week, calling the new rules “intrusive”, and calling China’s approach to cybersecurity “opaque” and “discriminatory”…China responded…that it would “protect the legitimate interests of foreign companies in accordance with the law”…

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