Hangzhou cracks down on internet ghostwriters paid to write and delete posts

Source:Global Times Published: 2019/1/15 17:50:24

Cyber police in Hangzhou in East China's Zhejiang Province have busted a group of internet ghostwriters paid to post online comments or delete posts, also known as the "Internet Water Army," in a case involving up to 2 million yuan ($0.3 million). 

The group, led by a man surnamed Sun, offered paid services, including hiring other ghostwriters at a lower price to help delete comments, forcing posts to be deleted by accusing the writers of plagiarism, and buying over editors or administrators of websites to delete posts, according to the cyber police in Hangzhou.

Sun and another eight suspects were arrested in Hangzhou and several other places in China, and the police seized eight computers and 10 mobile phones involved in the case.

Through transaction records on these computers, police found that the Internet Water Army has become an industry and is expanding its business.

According to China's laws and regulations, offering paid services to delete information from the internet or posting fake information online for money to interfere with market order is deemed "illegal business." The punishment is a fine of 20,000 yuan for individuals and 50,000 yuan for organizations.

Hangzhou's crackdown on the Internet Water Army is part of an ongoing drive to clean up the internet nationwide in order to protect the online environment. 

Cyber police around the country, including North China's Tianjin and South China's Guangdong, have arrested more than 20,000 suspects involved in network crimes.

Posted in: SOCIETY

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