China Unveils Emergency Drill To "Shut Down Harmful Websites"
3 August, 2017
China's 19th National Congress of the Communist Party - the quinquennial confab where the party selects new members of the Politburo, its ruling council - is expected to begin this fall (official dates have not yet been publicly announced). And in an effort to guarantee that the leadership reshuffle goes off without a hitch, President Xi Jinping is tightening the government’s grip on the internet to help protect the official narrative that Xi's "Chinese Dream" remains intact.
“Internet data centers (IDC) and cloud companies - which host website servers - were ordered to participate in a three-hour drill to hone their "emergency response" skills, according to at least four participants that included the operator of Microsoft's cloud service in China.
China's Ministry of Public Security called for the drill "in order to step up online security for the 19th Party Congress and tackle the problem of smaller websites illegally disseminating harmful information", according to a document circulating online attributed to a cyber police unit in Guangzhou.”
“China has been tightening its grip on the internet, including a recent drive to crack down on the usage of VPNs to bypass internet censorship, enlisting the help of state-owned telecommunication service providers to upgrade the so-called Great Firewall.