China passes personal information protection law

by Sami Burgaz
close up photo of programming of codes
New law comes as China tightens regulations around tech industry.

ANKARA (AA) – China on Friday adopted a law on the protection of personal information while tightening regulations for tech giants in the country.

Under the new regulation, any app that is found “illegally processing personal data” could be suspended or their services terminated in China.

The law was adopted at the Standing Committee of China’s top legislature – the National People’s Congress (NPC) – and it will take effect on Nov. 1, state-run Xinhua News reported.

“When pushing information and business marketing to individuals through automated decision-making, personal information processors should provide options that don’t target personal characteristics at the same time, or offer ways of rejection,” the law notes.

The new law mandates that individual consent “should be obtained when processing sensitive personal information such as biometrics, medical and health, financial accounts and whereabouts.”

The draft of the law was submitted to the NPC in March.

A Beijing-based Chinese analyst, Einar Tangen, told Anadolu Agency that China was sending “a clear message that Socialist principles will take precedence over Capitalist profits.”

“Monopolies that tax rather than compete for people’s business, violent and addictive video games and excessive academic cramming will be curtailed and income disparities will be addressed,” he said.

The adoption of the new law comes amid China’s tightening of regulations around the tech industry in the country.

On several occasions in the recent past, Chinese authorities summoned many big companies for violation of big data security and also took down many apps for user privacy violations.

Last month, the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) launched a probe into Chinese ride-hailing giant Didi Global Inc for allegedly violating user privacy.

“The economic emphasis and markets have been shifting towards the different levels of the middle classes for some time now. Those who understand this and act on it will prosper,” said Tangen.

“China’s markets are not going away, the Chinese government is simply adjusting the parameters of their society in line with their Socialist principles… Having watched the excesses and failures of many developed nations, Beijing is determined to not follow in their footsteps,” the analyst added.


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