China tightens Web censorship, control

July 26, 2011 at 12:24 PM   |   Comments

| License Photo
BEIJING, July 26 (UPI) -- Beijing police have told cafes, hotels and other businesses in the city to install surveillance technology for WiFi users or face fines and possible closure.

The move, the latest by the Chinese government to tighten Internet controls and access, follows the Middle Eastern uprisings in which the Internet and social networks played a pivotal role, The Guardian newspaper in Britain reported Tuesday.

Beijing businesses have been ordered to install monitoring software, which costs around $3,100, which will allow the authorities to check the identities of WiFi users and monitor their Internet activity.

Businesses that fail to comply face a fine and could have their licenses revoked.

"This is undoubtedly an invasion of WiFi users' privacy," Jason Chen, a 22-year-old Beijing resident, said.

"We have already felt the restriction on university campuses, since they have always been monitored. But this time, the control is stretching to cafes and people's feeling of violation is sharper."

Some Beijing businesses said they were already losing customers after cutting off WiFi.

"It is just unbelievable. Customers are not happy either," Leona Zhang, manager of the Contempio bar, said.

© 2011 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
Recommended UPI Stories
Most Popular
Ukraine: Troop movements will no longer be publicized after Russian attacks
High-ranking Chicago police officer charged with putting gun in man's mouth
Federal judge strikes down polygamy ban in Utah
Islamic State claims mass execution of 250 Syrian soldiers
Obama speaks on Iraq, Syria, the Islamic State threat, and Ukraine
Trending News