China Focus: China ramps up public cyber security awareness
BEIJING, June 1 (Greenpost) — China on Monday officially kicked off its second Cyber Security Week, part of the country’s effort to raise awareness amid growing Internet users and rising cyber attacks.
Jointly held by top state level departments, including the Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC), the ministries of education and public security, the event intends to help the public better understand Internet security risks and enhance their ability to protect themselves.
This year’s event aims to cultivate cyber security awareness among teenagers in particular, said head of the CAC Lu Wei.
“Cyber security isn’t just about national security and national development, but also concerns the immediate interests of every Internet user,” he said.
Lu’s words are in line with a recently released white paper on China’s military strategy, which said “cyberspace has become a new pillar of economic and social development, and a new domain of national security.”
He also urged the public to raise their cyber security awareness, voluntarily resist online pornography and groundless rumors and abide by the law on the Internet.
The week-long event came after a series of cybersecurity incidents and Internet service outages that stoked concern among the public about online data safety.
Alipay, China’s largest online payment platform, reported anomalies on Wednesday, which were found to be linked to optical fiber glitch. The next day, Ctrip.com, China’s largest online travel agent, scrambled to fix a service outage problem after its website and mobile platform went down Thursday morning.
Though both companies claimed that no user data was compromised, the incidents still put Chinese Internet companies’ security measures to the test. Many Internet users have urged Chinese Internet companies to improve their data security since the incidents.
Lyu Lisheng, director of domestic Internet security firm Keen, said Chinese Internet companies would prefer to expand their user scale and market share first, while ignoring cyber security measures.
The opening event also released a report on Chinese netizens’ cybersecurity awareness. According to Hong Jingyi, who surveyed 254,000 people, Chinese Internet users may fall victim easily to cyber attacks, online malwares and online security breaches.
The survey found that some 81 percent of netizens seldomly change their passwords, 76 percent use the same password for multiple online accounts while 44 percent use birthday and phone numbers as their passwords. In addition, some 16 percent use the most common passwords such as “123456” or “abcabc.”
In terms of making transactions via public Wi-Fi, the report said 83 percent are vulnerable to be taken advantage of by hackers.
With China’s new “Internet plus” strategy and encouragement for people to start their own business, cyber security is of ever more importance, said some experts.
“Without cyber security, there is no way the ‘Internet Plus’ strategy can be successful,” said Li Yuxiao, a professor on Internet governance from Beijing University of Posts and Telecommunications. Enditem
Editor Xuefei Chen Axelsson