China to start cyber security vetting on IT products, suppliers

Updated: 2014-05-22 11:35


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Beijing - If major IT products and services for systematic use concern national security and public interest, they will be subject to government cyber security vetting, said the State Internet Information Office Thursday.

The vetting is aimed to prevent a supplier from taking the advantage of its product to illegally control, disturb or shut down computer systems of its clients, as well as gather, store, process or use information of its clients, according to a statement from the office.

The companies that fail the vetting will be stopped from supplying their products and services in China, the statement said.

It is vital to China's national security, economic and social development as well as people's legitimate rights and interests to make sure technologies used for Internet and computer systems are "safe and under control", said Jiang Jun, the office's spokesman.

"For a long time, governments and enterprises of a few countries have gathered sensitive information on a large scale, taking the advantage of their monopoly in the market and technological edge," he said. "They not only seriously undermine interests of their clients but also threaten cyber security of other countries."

China's government departments, public institutions, enterprises, universities and backbone networks of its telecom firms have suffered extensive invasion and wiretapping, Jiang said.

Documents leaked by former Central Intelligence Agency contractor Edward Snowden in last June rang the alarm for cyber security of many countries, he said, adding that the incident reminded people how crucial cyber security is to national security.

"It shows that without cyber security, there's no national security," he said.

Having the world's most Internet users, China is due to tighten cyber security measures and security vetting of major IT products will be an effective one, Jiang said.

China is not the first country to adopt such security vetting. In 2012, the US House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence conducted security investigation on Chinese IT firms.

The US administration also asks federal agencies to choose cloudy computing services from service providers that have passed its security vetting.

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