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Legislation framework keeping cyberspace safe

By CAO YIN | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2023-03-16 23:33


China has consolidated its legal system for cyberspace governance over the years, providing a strong institutional guarantee for building the country's strength in cyberspace, officials said while introducing a white paper.

Titled "China's Law-Based Cyberspace Governance in the New Era", the paper was issued by the State Council Information Office on Thursday.

"Since 1994, when China was fully connected to the internet, it has accelerated legislation in cyberspace and promulgated more than 140 relevant laws," Cao Shumin, vice-minister of the Cyberspace Administration of China, said while explaining the paper at a news conference held by the office.

Now, the country has formed a cyber legislation framework, with the Constitution as the foundation and supported by laws, administrative regulations, departmental rules, local regulations and local administrative rules, she said.

The framework is endorsed by traditional legislation and underpinned by specialized cyber laws governing online content and management, cybersecurity, information technology and other elements, the paper said.

Recalling the legislation in the new era, Yue Zhongming, an official at the Legislative Affairs Commission of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress, the country's top legislature, revealed that they had formulated five laws on cyberspace and digital governance since the 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China in 2012.

The five pieces of legislation are the Cybersecurity Law, E-commerce Law, Data Security Law, Personal Information Protection Law and the law on Combating Telecom and Online Fraud.

During the period, a few existing laws were also revised to clarify responsibilities of online platforms, protect consumers' rights and maintain fair competition in cyberspace, Yue said.

"In addition, we compiled the Civil Code and amended the Criminal Law to better safeguard civil rights of those engaged in new forms of business and to fight new types of online crimes," he added.

Cyber legislation is now gradually concentrating on comprehensive cyberspace governance by covering areas such as network information services, information technology development and cybersecurity, according to the paper.

In the new era, a series of campaigns to regulate cyberactivities, such as those against online pornography, rumors, fraud and bullying, were carried out nationwide.

Such campaigns mean that law enforcement in cyberspace has intensified, Cao said, adding that these have also played "a big role in responding to public concerns and helping create a safe, fair, healthy, civilized and clean online environment".

With stronger domestic capacity in law-based internet governance, the paper noted that China has contributed ideas and solutions to global internet governance.

It said that China will always be committed to all-around law-based governance of the country and of the cyberspace, following the global governance principle of achieving shared growth through consultation and collaboration in the face of opportunities and challenges brought about by digitalization.

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