Modern life presents new security challenges
Blue Book report says authorities must watch for emerging vulnerabilities
Fraud committed through internet financing platforms, difficulty in overseeing the burgeoning package delivery system and weak controls over rental housing present new public security threats for China, a report said.
While changes brought by the internet and the free flow of people have made life more convenient, they also pose new challenges in maintaining public security, according to the 2017 Blue Book of China’s Society, released by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences on Wednesday.
The Blue Book also warns that China must be prepared for possible attacks, especially in embassy areas, soccer stadiums and subways.
“We’ve seen a large number of criminals using online peerto-peer lending platforms to trick investors. In one case, 900,000 people became victims. The number of large incidents caused by such illegal fundraising activities in the first six months of 2016 has significantly increased year-on-year,” said Zhou Yandong, an instructor at the School of Public Order, part of the People’s Public Security University of China.
Another challenge has been created by deliveries resulting from the boom in e-commerce.
During the first half of 2016, Chinese couriers delivered over 13.2 billion packages, an increase of 43.4 percent yearon-year. But public security forces also have noticed deliveries being used to transporting dangerous chemicals, drugs, knives and firearms, according to the Blue Book.
“The safety monitoring system in China’s logistics industry is still very weak and cannot cope with fast development of the industry. The government needs to encourage the couriers and individuals to report any suspicious packages to public security departments,” Zhou said.
House rentals, especially involving short-term leases, also have created a loophole in public security management.
number of packages delivered in China in the first half of this year, up 43.4 percent year-on-year
In some cases, people move in using a fake ID number and landlords don’t bother to verify the tenants’ identity, the Blue Book said.
“Such rental houses have become the perfect hideouts for prostitutes, drug dealers and users, and even terrorists,” Zhou said.
New urban communities formed by former rural villagers also present a vulnerability in terms of conflicts and crime because public services and the administration of such communities usually are relatively weak. Also, residents are still adjusting to a new life and sometimes feel lost in the cities, the report said.
While terrorist attacks have hit many countries in 2016, China has managed to thwart such attacks. Still, it must guard against attacks in semipublic and private spaces where law enforcement is weaker, Zhou said.