Chinese cyberspace regulator cracks down on illegal online activities
Published: Dec 25, 2023 07:51 PM
Photo: IC

Photo: IC

The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) recently stepped up its efforts to optimize the country’s online business environment, strengthening rectification of online information related to enterprises and targeting illegal activities that infringe on the legitimate rights of businesses and entrepreneurs.

The move represented further action taken by the CAC in optimizing business environment in China, expert noted.

On Monday, the CAC listed five major violation of cyberspace information regulations linked to business activity, read a post by the CAC on its WeChat account. The regulator closed the accounts and placed most of the related entities on a blacklist.

The CAC will maintain pressure in regulating business-related illegal and irregular information and behavior, taking actions such as exposing typical cases, to create a good business network environment which encourages the healthy development of enterprises, the post read.

Violations cited include several business areas, including information technology (IT) and automotive industries.

Two accounts were banned for spreading misinformation, including the “Consumer Finance Channel" on the Toutiao and "Payment Encyclopedia" on Sohu. The accounts had published negative information about an information technology company to coerce the company to carry out costly business cooperation and launch so-called “press release marketing and promotions.” 

Another IT related case involved an entity named “British Investor”, which spread false and misleading information about an IT company on multiple social media platforms including WeChat, Weibo, and Zhihu, requesting fees in exchange for deleting posts. 

In another case, "Courier Dou Dou" on Douyin, the Chinese version of Tiktok, deliberately spread false information about a company in a short video made and posted by an employee of the company. After the information was deleted by the employee, the company negotiated with the account to remove the short video. But the account took advantage of the situation and demanded payment for deleting the content. 

Several accounts, including "One Dish Two Dishes" on the Weibo platform, "Mr. Cai" on Douyin platform, and "Meiyan Auto" on WeChat platform had published, disseminated and hyped false information slandering product quality and the reputation of an auto company. CAC banned the accounts in accordance with the law.

Account entity, “Che Tou She” was blacklisted by CAC as it had released negative information about an auto enterprise in a bad faith move to force commercial cooperation. The entity continued to spread misinformation after the cooperation was rejected. All relevant accounts have been deleted.

China has made meaningful progress in optimizing its domestic business environment. According to a report released by the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade, over 90 percent of surveyed enterprises rated China's business environment as "satisfactory" or above. 
The recent tone-setting Central Economic Work Conference also emphasized the importance of optimizing business environment, calling for continuous efforts in building a world-class market-oriented, law-based business environment.

Global Times