Chinese tech companies are victims of “naked bullying” of the United States, said Beijing while criticizing the US actions against Chinese tech companies.
These comments from China come at a time when a new set of global guidelines for technology companies is being launched by the Chinese government. Under the new regulations, getting people’s data and large-scale surveillance illegally has been outlawed. The US too had announced a similar kind of data privacy regulation called The Clean Network last month.
This latest development is a continuation of the already tense relations between the US and China over issues of data security whch haa already impacted Chinese companies like TikTok, Huawei and WeChat.
Efforts to block Chinese tech firms like Huawei and Chinese apps including TikTok and WeChat have been speeded up by the Trump administration in recent months over charges that these are a threat to the country’s national security.
“Some individual countries are aggressively pursuing unilateralism, throwing dirty water on other countries under the pretext of ‘cleanliness’, and conducting global hunts on leading companies of other countries under the pretext of security,” China’s State Councillor Wang Yi said.
“This is naked bullying and should be opposed and rejected.”
Under the new data protection initiatives by China, tech companies have been asked not to create and inbuilt backdoors – which are defined as secret access to a company’s data and network – into their services, Wang said on Tuesday.
The Chinese telecom equipment maker Huawei has been repeatedly accused of creating such backdoors in its telecom equipment, which the US alleges cn be used by spying on US citizens and the country by Chinese agencies.
“Global data security rules that reflect the wishes of all countries and respect the interests of all parties should be reached on the basis of universal participation by all parties,” Wang added.
Under the new plan for global data security, China states that tech companies should not be involved in large-scale surveillance of other countries or that of foreign citizens by using the backdoor technology.
The Clean Network, a global blueprint to push out Chinese telecoms companies, apps and cloud providers from the entire internet infrastructure that is used by the US and other countries was launched in August by US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
“We call on all freedom-loving nations and companies to join the Clean Network,” Pompeo said. According to the State Department, more than 30 countries and territories have signed up to the network already.
Some legal experts have praised the efforts of China to set global standards on data security.
“China has a really robust data security network and the US is nowhere near at this level as it doesn’t have any national level laws. This announcement by China looks like a pragmatic approach to protect consumers and stop data abuse,” Carolyn Bigg, a technology and communications lawyer at law firm DLA Piper in a television interview.
(Adapted from BBC.com)