Entries with tag chinese government.

Chinese Government Censors Websites Following Hong Kong Unrest

Following pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, the Chinese government has blocked users in Hong Kong and China from websites showing and search results linking to images and reports related to the events. News outlets say this may be an attempt by the government to keep unrest from spreading to mainland China. The content blocked reportedly included some results on the Baidu search engine, and some images on Instagram and the Sina Weibo microblogging site, according to the BBC’s Beijing bureau. “It’s commonplace for China's internet censors to go into overdrive during politically sensitive events,” according to BBC Beijing correspondent Celia Hatton. Activists are reportedly using the Firechat messaging application—which works via Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, not the Internet—to circumvent censors. (BBC)(PC World)


Chinese Hackers Shift Attentions to Iraq

A Chinese hacking group thought to be allied with the Chinese government and that so far has targeted the US, has become increasingly focused on Iraq as tensions in the Middle East have risen, according to security firm CrowdStrike. The firm stated that the Deep Panda hacking group, which has collected information related to the US’s Southeast Asia policies, is now focused on the US’s Iraq and Middle East policy. China’s Foreign Ministry dismissed the report. CrowdStrike says Deep Panda is among the most sophisticated and difficult-to-penetrate hacking groups that it tracks. The security firm says Deep Panda has targeted the high-tech and financial services industries, think tanks, and government agencies since 2009, breaching email systems, directories, and files of victims. (Reuters)(Dark Reading)(CrowdStrike Blog)

Chinese Government Asks Banks to Remove IBM Products

The Chinese government is asking all domestic banks to remove high-end IBM servers and replace them with local products as part of a trial program, according to Bloomberg reports. It is the latest in what some media outlets are calling retaliation against the US for its spying claims against China. As part of a larger government review, the People’s Bank of China and the state Ministry of Finance are reviewing whether the nation’s reliance on foreign-made technology compromises its security. The move is political gamesmanship, according to Richard Fichera, a Forrester analyst. “There’s obviously an element of political tit for tat going on here,” Fichera told Bloomberg. “Telling the Chinese banks to get off of it is one thing, but actually doing it is another.” The sources did not state specifically why IBM was targeted nor the specific problems the products could cause. IBM has not commented on the matter. (Reuters)(Bloomberg)

Chinese Government Examining IT Products to Prevent Cyberespionage

The Chinese government is inspecting all IT products used by the government as well as by companies in the communications, finance, energy, and national security sectors to prevent espionage, according to the country’s official Xinhua News Agency. The government’s Internet Information Office will be looking for security problems with products and services, offered by Chinese and non-Chinese companies. The government will block suppliers whose products fail the inspection from selling goods or services in China. Xinhua claims “The vetting is aimed at preventing suppliers from taking advantage of their products to illegally control, disrupt, or shut down their clients’ systems, or to gather, store, process or use their clients’ information.” The government contends that it—along with Chinese universities, enterprises, and telecommunications infrastructure—has suffered extensive hacking. (The Associated Press)(Computerworld)(Xinhua News Service)

Chinese Government Bans Windows 8

The Chinese government has announced that its agencies cannot use Microsoft’s Windows 8 operating system. The prohibition was related to energy savings, said China’s Central Government Procurement Center, which offered no further explanation. The official Xinhua news agency, on the other hand, said the ban was enacted to ensure computer security after Microsoft ended support for Windows XP in April 2014. A more precise rationale for the ban was not provided by officials. Microsoft does provide security support, for a fee to governments still using Windows XP and is already doing so in the Netherlands and the UK. (Reuters)(TIME)(ZD Net)

Chinese Officials Approve Nokia-Microsoft Deal

Chinese officials gave its approval to Nokia to sell its mobile-phone business to Microsoft without changing its patent practices. This would let Nokia sell the business but keep its handset patents, valued at between €3 billion ($4.14 billion) and €10 billion ($13.85 billion). The various regulatory approvals are required based on the size of the transaction and the firms’ market positions. In some cases, to ensure equitable footing in the market, a government could impose operating conditions. Analysts had concerns Chinese regulators would place some sort of stringent conditions -- such as changes to its licensing or terms for its royalties -- on Nokia’s patent licensing before approving the sale to Microsoft. Competitors Google and Samsung had, for example, asked the Chinese government to make certain closure of the deal would not translate into higher licensing fees. Still facing Nokia is an Indian tax case. However, the company says this will not delay consummation of the €5.4 billion ($7.48 billion) deal, expected to occur by the end of this month. (The Associated Press)(Reuters)

China Wants Extended XP Support from Microsoft

The Chinese government wants Microsoft to extend its support for Windows XP to halt the traffic in pirated Microsoft software. A state copyright official claims the release of Windows 8 translates into higher prices for Windows-based computers, which leads consumers to purchase less expensive, pirated versions of the software. Windows XP is still used by a large percentage of Chinese. Ending the support would also increase security threats to users. (SlashDot)(Network World)

UK Government Investigating Huawei

United Kingdom government officials announced plans to investigate security at a cybersecurity center located in southern England operated by China’s Huawei. The investigation is reportedly being conducted to ensure the nation’s telecommunications networks remain secure. There are concerns about the company’s access to the nation’s communications infrastructure and whether it has ties to the Chinese government or military. Allegations have been made that the firm inserts backdoors in its equipment to allow the Chinese government to conduct espionage. United States businesses have already been advised by US House of Representatives members not to buy equipment from the company following testimony by the firm they deemed “unconvincing”. The security center, staffed by UK nationals, was opened in 2010 to test both telecommunications hardware and software for security risks before they were used in Britain’s critical infrastructure. Huawei, the world’s second largest telecommunications firm, issued a statement supporting the investigation, which is also determining whether the UK Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) should have a greater role in managing the center. (ZDNet)(Reuters)

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