China passes the world's strictest user data protection law

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in General Discussion
China has passed one of the most restrictive data protection laws in the world, tightening control over how personal information is collected and used by companies in the country.

Credit: Li Yang/Unsplash
Credit: Li Yang/Unsplash


The Personal Information Protection Law lays out a comprehensive set of rules around data collection, processing, and protection, the Associated Press reported Friday. Previously, regulations on user data were spread out through patchwork legislation.

It specifically targets how private companies handle user data. The law doesn't appear to affect the Chinese government's surveillance efforts.

The law is set to take effect on Nov. 1. It gives specific standards for what type of information private companies in China can collect, as well as standards related to the storage of that data. However, the full text of the law hasn't been made available, the AP reported.

Additionally, the law mandates that companies get user consent before they collect data and also requires companies to offer customers the ability to withdraw consent at any time. It also bars companies from denying services to customers who refuse to hand over their information.

Shares of Chinese companies like Alibaba sank on news of the law's passage. The new data protection bill also closely follows antitrust actions taken against companies like Tencent and Alibaba.

The law reflects a new economic strategy from Beijing, which includes wanting technology giants to make money from the digitalization of public services rather than social media data, Rebecca Arcesati, an analyst at the Mercator Institute for China Studies, told the AP.

Although the legislation is similar to the European Global Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), it differs in that it doesn't mention anything about limiting the ability of the ruling party or the government to access user information in China.

Violating the law's regulations could also carry a steep price tag for companies, including fines up to $7.7 million or up to 5% of the company's business income in the previous year.

Although the law largely targets Chinese-based companies, it does include provisions that dictate how foreign companies can handle Chinese citizens' data. The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that most companies that are compliant with the GDPR will already be mostly ready for the Chinese law.

It's likely that the regulation will mostly affect companies that deal heavily in customer data. Apple, for its part, has taken steps to minimize the data it collects on users. The Cupertino tech giant also complies with Chinese regulations, including rules that require iCloud data to be stored on domestic servers.

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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 18
    DAalsethDAalseth Posts: 1,817member
    PRC government doesn’t want the competition.
    tmayrepressthiswatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 18
    Data protection laws need to be implemented globally. It is time to end the data economy
    flyingdprepressthislkruppwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 18
    cornchipcornchip Posts: 1,866member

    .The law doesn't appear to affect the Chinese government's surveillance efforts.



    there it is.
    flyingdprepressthiswatto_cobrabeowulfschmidt
  • Reply 4 of 18
    larryjwlarryjw Posts: 862member
    I like the line that says that Beijing wants companies to make money digitizing public services rather than mining social media.

    Thumbs for that. 
    repressthisGeorgeBMactokyojimuwilliamlondon
  • Reply 5 of 18
    If China is serious then require App tracking to be turned off by default. Now the only thing that can be collected is within a specific app's usage (as it should be).

    It would be a punch to the gut for some companies (big and.not so big) and I don't like to see people lose their jobs, but surveillance capitalism isn't something that should have been relied on for mega billions in the first place.  
    flyingdpJapheyrepressthiswatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 18
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 5,824member
    I find it ironic that the Chinese government demands strict data privacy from Chinese companies, yet turns right around and essentially breaches all of that to spy on its own citizens, not to mention the entire world.
    repressthiswilliamlondonlkruppJackyChanwatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 18
    sflocal said:
    I find it ironic that the Chinese government demands strict data privacy from Chinese companies, yet turns right around and essentially breaches all of that to spy on its own citizens, not to mention the entire world.
    It is not ironic. What is the purpose of a government? You believe FBI, NSA don't collect personal data? Or monitoring? 
    repressthisGeorgeBMactokyojimuwilliamlondonemcnairavon b7
  • Reply 8 of 18
    longfanglongfang Posts: 258member
    sflocal said:
    I find it ironic that the Chinese government demands strict data privacy from Chinese companies, yet turns right around and essentially breaches all of that to spy on its own citizens, not to mention the entire world.
    As they say, learn from the best, aka the NSA. 
    GeorgeBMacwilliamlondon
  • Reply 9 of 18
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,638member
    All the love for China here. I guess it’s a prelude to total acceptance ArchStanton said:
    If China is serious then require App tracking to be turned off by default. Now the only thing that can be collected is within a specific app's usage (as it should be).

    It would be a punch to the gut for some companies (big and.not so big) and I don't like to see people lose their jobs, but surveillance capitalism isn't something that should have been relied on for mega billions in the first place.  

    “Surveillance capitalism”? What kind of babbling bullshit is this? 
  • Reply 10 of 18
    lkrupp said:
    All the love for China here. I guess it’s a prelude to total acceptance ArchStanton said:
    If China is serious then require App tracking to be turned off by default. Now the only thing that can be collected is within a specific app's usage (as it should be).

    It would be a punch to the gut for some companies (big and.not so big) and I don't like to see people lose their jobs, but surveillance capitalism isn't something that should have been relied on for mega billions in the first place.  

    “Surveillance capitalism”? What kind of babbling bullshit is this? 
    You can read either book listed below (or at least do article reading at eff.org). Then you can respond regarding "babbling bullshit" with some knowledge of the subject.

    You and your own opinion on the subject not withstanding, it is important to anyone else reading this: make no mistake, huge amounts of your private data is collected by many companies (Google and Facebook are collecting the most, but not even remotely close to the only ones). This is done in significant part thanks to App Tracking (one installed App tracks what you do across your others apps/phone).  If someone thinks this is no big dea, like who I am responding to, then this reply isn't for you. For those that do care, especially ones railing against CSAM with Apple, understand Apple is by far one of the least data collecting Companies out there. And if you are going to be upset about what Apple has done, open your eyes to the massive data collection that is going on constantly. 
    Don't take my word for it, request your free emailed copy of your data from Apple, Google, Facebook (just expect Google and Facebook downloads to take a long time). 


    How To Destroy Surveillance Capitalism by Cory Doctorow

    The Age Of Surveillance Capitalism by Shoshana Zuboff


    (Both available in e copy)

    IreneWGG1GeorgeBMacPascalxxwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 18
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 10,730member
    sflocal said:
    I find it ironic that the Chinese government demands strict data privacy from Chinese companies, yet turns right around and essentially breaches all of that to spy on its own citizens, not to mention the entire world.

    I find it ironic that, in a democracy we trust private companies who are collecting our private information and selling it to the highest bidder -- but we fear the government we elected doing the exact same thing we're fine with private companies doing!

    Social Media in America knows more about you than your spouse does.   But you fear your government.  I find that confusing.

    [But in this case, your claim is not relevant since this law gives the Chinese government no power to spy -- while the world's biggest spy is the U.S.  We're #1!]


    edited August 21
  • Reply 12 of 18
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 10,730member
    lkrupp said:
    All the love for China here. I guess it’s a prelude to total acceptance ArchStanton said:
    If China is serious then require App tracking to be turned off by default. Now the only thing that can be collected is within a specific app's usage (as it should be).

    It would be a punch to the gut for some companies (big and.not so big) and I don't like to see people lose their jobs, but surveillance capitalism isn't something that should have been relied on for mega billions in the first place.  

    “Surveillance capitalism”? What kind of babbling bullshit is this? 

    Ask Google.  Or Facebook.   They are the experts.   This is an Apple forum.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 18
    JackyChanJackyChan Posts: 11unconfirmed, member
    sflocal said:
    I find it ironic that the Chinese government demands strict data privacy from Chinese companies, yet turns right around and essentially breaches all of that to spy on its own citizens, not to mention the entire world.
    Precisely. The irony here is overwhelming. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 18
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 10,730member
    JackyChan said:
    sflocal said:
    I find it ironic that the Chinese government demands strict data privacy from Chinese companies, yet turns right around and essentially breaches all of that to spy on its own citizens, not to mention the entire world.
    Precisely. The irony here is overwhelming. 
    Personally, I trust government more than I trust any private company run for profit and at the whim of its owner.
    Whether Communist or Democratic, the job of government is to assure a safe, stable and secure society.  Private corporations have no such charter -- they are only in it for themselves.

  • Reply 15 of 18
    22july201322july2013 Posts: 2,659member
    JackyChan said:
    sflocal said:
    I find it ironic that the Chinese government demands strict data privacy from Chinese companies, yet turns right around and essentially breaches all of that to spy on its own citizens, not to mention the entire world.
    Precisely. The irony here is overwhelming. 
    Personally, I trust government more than I trust any private company run for profit and at the whim of its owner.
    Whether Communist or Democratic, the job of government is to assure a safe, stable and secure society. 
    Although I like the fact that you trust your capitalist government, I must assert that communism <> capitalism. E.g., Putin has earned (or rather stolen) $200 Billion during his time as president, (and his cronies probably earned similar amounts) while Trump, for comparison, earned nothing, because he gave all his presidential income to charity. If Trump or Biden was siphoning $200B, you would call for either of them to be impeached.

    I think the real reason for this new law in China is so that the CCP can say to a Chinese business, "We'll turn a blind eye to your data theft if you let us take a copy of the data." In other words, this law actually does give the CCP more power.
    edited August 22 watto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 18
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 10,730member
    JackyChan said:
    sflocal said:
    I find it ironic that the Chinese government demands strict data privacy from Chinese companies, yet turns right around and essentially breaches all of that to spy on its own citizens, not to mention the entire world.
    Precisely. The irony here is overwhelming. 
    Personally, I trust government more than I trust any private company run for profit and at the whim of its owner.
    Whether Communist or Democratic, the job of government is to assure a safe, stable and secure society. 
    Although I like the fact that you trust your capitalist government, I must assert that communism <> capitalism. E.g., Putin has earned (or rather stolen) $200 Billion during his time as president, (and his cronies probably earned similar amounts) while Trump, for comparison, earned nothing, because he gave all his presidential income to charity. If Trump or Biden was siphoning $200B, you would call for either of them to be impeached.

    I think the real reason for this new law in China is so that the CCP can say to a Chinese business, "We'll turn a blind eye to your data theft if you let us take a copy of the data." In other words, this law actually does give the CCP more power.

    Communists and socialists absolutely trust government more than private, for-profit companies.  That's kind of why they are communist and socialist.

    But, even in a democracy, I still trust my government more than I trust a for profit corporation.
    One is, at least in theory, working for me.  The other is working for themselves (and hopefully benefiting society as they do so).

    (As for Trump -- he was skimming off the top.  Our government and others spent many millions at his properties.)
    (As for Russia and Putin:  Russia is no longer communist.  It is the kind of oligarchic dictatorship Trump tried to establish here.)
    edited August 22
  • Reply 17 of 18
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 2,509member
    JackyChan said:
    sflocal said:
    I find it ironic that the Chinese government demands strict data privacy from Chinese companies, yet turns right around and essentially breaches all of that to spy on its own citizens, not to mention the entire world.
    Precisely. The irony here is overwhelming. 
    Personally, I trust government more than I trust any private company run for profit and at the whim of its owner.
    Whether Communist or Democratic, the job of government is to assure a safe, stable and secure society.  Private corporations have no such charter -- they are only in it for themselves.

    Google won’t arrest you for searching for something less than legal. If it knew, the government would. 
  • Reply 18 of 18
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 10,730member
    elijahg said:
    JackyChan said:
    sflocal said:
    I find it ironic that the Chinese government demands strict data privacy from Chinese companies, yet turns right around and essentially breaches all of that to spy on its own citizens, not to mention the entire world.
    Precisely. The irony here is overwhelming. 
    Personally, I trust government more than I trust any private company run for profit and at the whim of its owner.
    Whether Communist or Democratic, the job of government is to assure a safe, stable and secure society.  Private corporations have no such charter -- they are only in it for themselves.

    Google won’t arrest you for searching for something less than legal. If it knew, the government would. 

    If what you're doing is "less than legal" then shouldn't you be arrested?  Why would you blame government for doing what it is supposed to do?
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