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China to upgrade cyber protection

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China is expected to issue a regulation on graded protection of cyber security this week, with experts saying it will improve national security.

The regulation covers oversight of not only network and information system but also cloud computing, big data, and Internet of Things, said Guo Qiquan, chief engineer at network security safeguard bureau  of the Ministry of Public Security (MPS) at a conference in Beijing on Monday, Nandu Daily reported.

The regulation, which was based on a previous one supervising the government's cyber security, will be extended to "supervise the whole society," Guo said. He hailed the graded protection of cyber security as "the basic State policy, basic system and basic approach."

The regulation identifies five levels of the protection system based on the seriousness of the threat to State security, social order and public interests, according to djbh.net, the cyber security classification protection website under MPS.

Guo said "the biggest change" in the new regulation is it increases the protection level for individuals and institutions.

The protection level will be raised to the third grade if they face severe threats, he said.

The regulation was jointly written by four departments, including the MPS, Cyberspace Administration of China and National Administration for the Protection of State Secrets.

 "By classifying the protection on cyber security, the regulation will better safeguard national security. It will supplement the Cybersecurity Law," Qin An, head of the Beijing-based Institute of China Cyberspace Strategy, told the Global Times.

The protection of the "critical information infrastructure" is key to "the protection of cyber security," Guo said during the conference.

The critical information infrastructure will have to be recorded, undergo classification evaluation and security inspections. A regulation specific on the critical information infrastructure has been drafted and is undergoing a judicial process, according to Guo.

Critical information infrastructure are fields involving finances, defense, education and medical care, Xie Yongjiang, deputy director of the Institute of Internet Governance and Law at the Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications, told the Global Times.

China will continue to face cyber security threats like cyber terrorism, cyber crimes, cyber hegemonism, cyber militarism (terrorism activities operated by a country) and cyber liberalism (people who believe in independent internet sovereignty), Qin noted.

China lags behind in fighting cyber security threats, as critical technology in China such as chips and operating systems heavily rely on other countries. Strengthening cyber security protection management plays a critical role in helping China fight those threats, Xie noted.

To cope with internet security incidents, China also released an emergency response plan in 2017.



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