Chinese Prez Xi stresses cybersecurity

Posted 2016/04/26

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BEIJING, April 26 (Xinhua) — President Xi Jinping has called for the comprehensive detection of Internet risks to ensure online security.

Xi made the remarks at a symposium on cybersecurity and informatization on April 19, during which he called for enhanced cybersecurity and told officials to use the Internet to understand public opinion. The full text of his speech was made public on Monday.

In his speech, Xi stressed the “correct outlook on cybersecurity” and called for the establishment of a system to protect information infrastructure in industries including finance, energy, telecommunications and transportation.

He urged authorities to establish unified and effective mechanisms to report risks and share information.

Internet defense capabilities should be enhanced and the roles of governments and market forces should be clearly defined, the president said.

“The competition between major countries on Internet security not only depends on technology but also on concepts and public opinions,” Xi said, adding that China’s proposals on cyber-sovereignty and a community of common destiny in cyberspace have won the support of the majority of countries.

To safeguard cybersecurity, Xi called on the industry to undertake more research into core Internet technology, which he identified as being the “key to China’s Internet development” and warned that, “having other countries holding the key is our biggest threat.”

Blocking Internet access is not the right way to manage the Internet, he said, stressing that, “China can not and will not shut its door to the world.”

“We welcome foreign Internet enterprises as long as they abide by Chinese laws and regulations,” said the president.

During the symposium, Xi said R&D investment should target technology that the country needs the most, and the industrialization of the technology should be improved.

“Unlike Microsoft, Intel, Google and Apple, Chinese Internet enterprises do not cooperate well with each other on research, which is one of the reasons why there is a huge gap between China and other countries,” Xi added.

He suggested establishing alliances between academic and research institutions and enterprises to enhance coordination.

The president also stressed the role of the Internet in directing and representing public opinion.

Xi ordered officials to use the Internet to engage with the people, learning about their concerns and wishes and engaging with them online.

“Internet users come from many places, each with their own experiences, and opinions. Therefore, it is too much to ask them to be right on every topic,” said Xi.

There should be greater tolerance and patience to Internet users, Xi said, adding officials need to draw sincere suggestions and feedback from the Internet, help clarify public misconception or their fuzzy ideas about certain matters, dissolve public grudges and grievances, and correct their wrong perceptions.

A clean and healthy cyberspace is in the interests of the people, while a foul and unhealthy one serves no one, said Xi.

No country will allow cyberspace to be used to go against the regime, incite religious extremism, national separatism and violence, or to be filled with pornography and hate, Xi noted.

China must improve the management of cyberspace and work to ensure high quality content, he said, with positive voices creating a healthy, positive culture that is a force for good.

The president suggested that the cyberspace be imbued with positive energy and mainstream values, in the hope of creating a clean and righteous environment.

However, rather than all people holding the same opinion, a positive public opinion environment in cyberspace means no slanders, rumors, crimes and other violations of the Constitution and laws, said Xi.

For well-meant criticism raised on the Internet, be it at the overall work of the Party and the state, or at individual officials, be it gentle or harsh-sounding, Xi said, “we will not only welcome it, but also study it for future reference.”

In his speech, the president stressed the responsibility of Internet firms, saying that only by accepting their social responsibility can they be competitive and enjoy better development.

“Web entrepreneurs should not regard clicks as their only goal. Online shop owners should not sell counterfeit or substandard products. Social media organizers should not spread rumors. Search engines should not decide the position of websites in results just based on how much they pay,” said Xi.

Concerned by online fraud, the president urged authorities to speed up legislation on the Internet and enhance supervision over cyberspace to deal with cyber risks.

Moreover, Xi called for enhanced management of big data. Internet enterprises must attach great importance to the security of data, as they may involve national interests and security, said Xi.

He also stressed the importance of talents in developing the Internet, calling on authorities at all levels to attract and keep skilled employees.

The flow of talents among governments, enterprises and think tanks should be encouraged, he added.

A talent system with global competitiveness should be established, said Xi, adding all talents are welcome to China, no matter where they are from.

The Chinese people should be provided with information services that are accessible, affordable and of a high standard, Xi told the symposium.

China, although a latecomer to the Internet, has made remarkable achievements in the development of Internet networks and services, Xi said, adding that 700 million Chinese netizens use the Internet to study, work, and access public services.

The president stressed that the development of the Internet in China should meet the people’s expectations and demands. He called for more investment in Internet infrastructure, especially in rural areas, saying online tools and services should be used to support poverty alleviation campaigns.

“More people in poverty should have access to the Internet. They can use it to sell their agricultural products and their children can receive a high-quality education,” Xi said.

Moreover, the Internet should serve as a new growth driver for the Chinese economy, he said.

The “Internet Plus” strategy has boosted innovation and entrepreneurship in China, and the information-based economy accounts for an increasingly larger share of China’s GDP.

“In the process of informatization, no progress, or even slower progress, means regression. China must improve its information infrastructure and the integration of information resources,” Xi said.

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