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Concern Emerge Over Web Filtering Software In China

According to the chief of a Chinese advisory group of Internet standards, a directive by the Government of China mandating the fitting of advanced Internet filtering program on all new PCs may well make Chinese users vulnerable to spyware under government's control.

Said Chairman Charles Mok of the Internet Society, Hong Kong that he thought the directive imposed an element of suspicion at the consumers' end. Aljazeera reported this on June 9, 2009.

Previously Government of China had directed that all PCs to be sold from July 1, 2009 must have the "Green Dam-Youth Escort" software. The purpose of this Internet filtering application, according to authorities, is to safeguard the younger generation from pornography. Further, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology has spent 41.7m Yuan ($6.1m) towards developing the software that would be shipped with new computers.

Also, all computer manufacturers in China have been sent the directive. But, it is said that they are irksome about the new regulation, however, not as much as to oppose authorities. The reason attributed to this annoyance is that there isn't sufficient time before July 1 by when the massive production output could be added with the application.

Moreover, the period of introducing the directive is also the time when there is apprehension among the Internet and computer industry players of too high a government tax on repression and censorship that they would be comfortable to pay.

Nonetheless, officials have described as untrue a piece of media news, which says that spyware would be loaded onto Chinese PCs to regulate the country's Internet users. State the authorities that pornography filtering program planned for loading onto computers isn't sophisticated enough to the job of spyware.

Thus, according to Deputy Chief Liu Zhengrong of the State Council Information's Internet Affairs Bureau, the software to be installed is created to filter the Internet from pornography and just that. ChinaDaily reported this on June 10, 2009.

Meanwhile, security specialists stated the issue isn't the first of its kind in China for, during 2007, authorities similarly ordered Chinese operators of online games to include anti-addiction program within their games.

Related article: Concordia University Blocked Use of Facebook

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