Tech firms warily await Chinese cyber plan

Tech firms warily await Chinese cyber plan
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China is planning to issue a five-year cybersecurity plan to better protect government software, Reuters reported Thursday.

The new document could amplify concerns of foreign technology companies that feel they are being pushed out of a the world’s second-largest economy by looming Chinese cybersecurity regulations.

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Chen Wei, a senior official with China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, first told the state-run news outlet China Daily about the plan.

He said the strategy would center on security measures for software used by government agencies, state-owned businesses and financial firms. No further details were given.

China has been moving to protect its domestic information technology following government leaker Edward Snowden’s disclosures of U.S. snooping.

Over the past two years, Beijing has cut a number of major foreign tech firms from its list of approved vendors.

More recently, officials have been moving forward with national security and counterterrorism laws that include cybersecurity requirements for foreign firms operating in China. Essentially, companies would have to use Beijing-approved encryption methods and submit source code for inspection.

Banking technology guidelines also would set limits on the use of foreign technology across the Chinese financial sector. Those rules have been temporarily suspended over objections from foreign governments and the international business community.