China to close In­ter­net ac­cess loop­hole

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - BUSINESS & FARM - — Bloomberg News

BEI­JING — China’s gov­ern­ment has told telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions car­ri­ers to block in­di­vid­u­als’ ac­cess to vir­tual pri­vate net­works by Feb. 1, peo­ple fa­mil­iar with the mat­ter said, shut­ting a ma­jor win­dow to the global In­ter­net.

Bei­jing has or­dered state-run telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions firms, which in­clude China Mo­bile, China Uni­com and China Tele­com, to bar peo­ple from us­ing vir­tual pri­vate net­works, ser­vices that skirt cen­sor­ship by rout­ing Web traf­fic abroad, the peo­ple said, ask­ing not to be iden­ti­fied talk­ing about pri­vate gov­ern­ment di­rec­tives.

In keep­ing with Pres­i­dent Xi Jin­ping’s “cy­ber sovereignty” cam­paign, the gov­ern­ment ap­pears to be crack­ing down on loop­holes around the Great Fire­wall, a sys­tem that blocks for­eign in­for­ma­tion sources from Twit­ter and Face­book to news web­sites such as The New York Times and oth­ers.

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