Authorities in China are introducing a set of new regulations that many see as a way of tightening internet censorship practices in the country.
The CPC, the ruling party in the country, has published a set of new regulations after what it describes as a long process of public consultations.
In the proposed regulatory changes, which are undoubtedly going to be formalised soon, all the websites that intend to access the Chinese market will have to register using Chinese domain names; it has been reported.
It has also been further reported that the new top-tier Chinese domain names will remain under the tight control of the state, meaning that the state will yield the right and power to shut down or block access to any website that it judges as problematic.
According to Xinhua, the state-controlled news agency in the country, the new rules are meant to help promote Chinese interests at the international level.
‘The new rules will promote cooperation with china’s development tasks among foreign organisations,’ the news agency reported.
However, many experts have expressed concerns that the Chinese government intends to use the new set of rules to tighten Internet censorship activities in the country even further.
According to Sang Young, an information security expert at Hong Kong University, the new regulations are an additional problem to internet users in China because they make it difficult for the users to bypass the current restrictions imposed by the Great Firewall and access the content of foreign websites.
‘It will be difficult for Chinese internet users to access foreign-based websites once the new rules come into effect,’ he pointed out.
China users a horde of filters and other censorship measures to block the content of many websites in the country. Chinese internet users cannot access the content of websites that the Chinese government considers problematic because of the Great Firewall.
However, the introduction of the new rules is set to make things harder for Chinese internet users because the government will now block the use of VPNs.
So far, Chinese internet users have been managing to circumvent the filters of the Great Firewall and access the content of foreign-based websites by using VPNs. However, it appears that once the new rules get into force, it will be difficult for the users to access VPNs since the government will have control over all the websites that operate in the country, thanks to the new rules on domain names.
It has also been reported that, apart from censoring news, the Chinese government will likely use the new rules to censor the apps that Chinese mobile users can access.