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China’s new Cybersecurity Law is one of the most important pieces of privacy and cybersecurity legislation we’ll see this year, and companies of all sizes need to be aware of its requirements – regardless of whether or not they have a physical presence in China.
The new law goes into effect on June 1, 2017, meaning that companies have a few weeks left to familiarize themselves with the law and work on achieving compliance.
The requirement that “important data” remain in-country therefore reflects a recent trend of governments appearing to put a security premium on business or governmental data equivalent to, or even greater than, the concern accorded to individuals’ personal data (for example, Saudi Arabia’s draft cloud computing regulations similarly appear to prize business and governmental data).
Note that this is not the first time China has imposed a data localization requirement, as several preexisting sector-specific regulations prohibit the transfer of certain types of data (i.e.
However, simply reviewing the law itself is not enough: in order to truly understand its requirements, it is important to step back and view the law in the context of the Chinese legal system more generally.
This post provides a breakdown of this complex new law and its implications for businesses, and provides additional context needed to understand the Chinese privacy law landscape from a more holistic perspective.
For the time being, it appears that the definition of “CII provider” could have a fairly wide scope.
It also is important to note that although much of the law is devoted to regulating network operators or CII providers, the law’s applicability is not just limited to those types of entities.
These three laws operate in tandem to regulate many aspects of cybersecurity and privacy law in China, while potentially giving the Chinese government broader surveillance powers.First things first: what is the current state of data protection law in China?