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Harsher punishment proposed for VPN providers
Published on: 2021-11-22
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China’s top cyberspace watchdog has drafted a new regulation that would punish individuals and institutions for helping internet users bypass the “Great Firewall” and access censored information from overseas.

The proposed rule, unveiled on Sunday and subject to change after public consultation ends on December 13, marks harshest attempt so far to crack down on the providers of virtual private network (VPN) services, which allow users to hide their digital footprint by redirecting traffic through a remote server.

Titled “Network Data Security Management Regulations”, the proposal by the Cyberspace Administration of China stipulates that no individual or organisation shall provide “programs, tools, routes” or services, including internet access, server hosting, technical support, promotion, app downloads, payment and settlement for “penetrating and bypassing the cross-border data security gateway”.

Any violation may result in a fine no more than 10 times the amount of money made from the offence, or up to 500,000 yuan if the offender is in a management position. Any offending organisation may have its business license revoked.






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