China Drafts Rules on Security Reviews for Apps Influencing Public Opinion

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China’s cyber regulatory physique issued on Wednesday draft guidelines governing cell apps, together with a requirement for safety evaluations of apps whose capabilities may affect public opinion.

The proposed laws are a part of a marketing campaign run by the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) over the previous 12 months to extend oversight of the nation’s tech firms.

The public has been invited to provide suggestions on the draft guidelines by January 20.

The proposals would require software suppliers to hold out a safety evaluation earlier than launching “new technologies, new applications, and new functions” able to influencing opinion or mobilising the general public.

The CAC didn’t specify any particular apps or define the safety evaluation course of apart from to say it needs to be carried out in accordance with nationwide laws.

The proposed guidelines would apply to “text, picture, voice, video, and other information production”, in addition to instantaneous messaging, information dissemination, discussion board communities, livestreaming, and e-commerce, the regulator mentioned.

The regulator added that cell app suppliers should not conduct actions that endanger nationwide safety, or pressure customers to share non-essential private data.

News apps should acquire licenses granting permission to publish information, it mentioned.

Over the previous 12 months, Chinese authorities have tightened laws throughout quite a few industries, starting from gaming to actual property to schooling.

The CAC has led quite a few initiatives concentrating on the nation’s tech sector.

On Tuesday, CAC introduced it will implement two new guidelines. One rule requires platform firms with over 1 million customers to bear safety assessments earlier than itemizing abroad, which might take impact in February. The different rule governs firms’ use of advice algorithms, which might take impact in March.

© Thomson Reuters 2022

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