National People’s Congress Standing Committee Decision Concerning Safeguarding Internet Safety

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Passed in the 19th Meeting of the Ninth Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, on 28 December 2000

Our country’s internet, under national energetic initiative and vigorous promotion, has gained extensive use in the construction of the economy and various businesses, as well as caused people’s production, jobs, study and lifestyle to start and continue to change rapidly and possesses an important function to the acceleration of our national economy, the development of science and technology and the progress of the informatisation in service of society. At the same time, how to ensure the safe running of the Internet and the safety of information is a question that has attracted widespread societal attention. In order to promote the beneficial, abolish the harmful, promote the healthy development of our country’s internet, protect national security and the common interest in society, protect individuals and legal persons and other group’s legal rights, the following is decided:

1: In order to protect the safe functioning of the Internet, according to the pertinent regulations of criminal law, those that conduct on of the following acts that constitute an offence, will bear the responsibility for their crimes:

(I): intrusion into the computer and information systems in the domains of national affairs, national defence construction, the frontiers of science and technology;

(II): intentional creation and dissemination of computer viruses and other destructive programmes, attacking computer systems and communication networks, causing computer systems and communication networks to sustain damage;

(III): in infringement of national regulation, without authorization breaking off computer networks or communication services, hindering the regular functioning of computer networks or communication systems.

2: In order to protect the national security and the stability of society, according to the pertinent regulations of criminal law, those that conduct on of the following acts that constitute an offence, will bear criminal responsibility:

(I):  Using the internet to start rumours, slander or issue and disseminate other sorts of harmful information, inciting the overthrow of the national regime, overthrow the socialist system, or inciting to divide the country, destroying the unity of the country.

(II): Using the Internet to steal and divulge national secrets, intelligence or military secrets.

(III): Using the Internet to incite ethnic hatred, ethnic bias, destroy the unity of the ethnic groups.

(IV): Using the Internet to organise heretic groups, contact members of heretic groups, destroy the national laws and administrative regulations that are in place.

3: In order to safeguard the socialist market economy order and societal management order, according to the pertinent regulations of criminal law, those that conduct on of the following acts that constitute an offence, will bear criminal responsibility:

(I): Using the Internet to sell false or inferior products or give publicity to false product and services;

(II): Using the Internet to damage other business’s reputation and the reputation of products;

(III): Using the Internet to violate other’s intellectual property rights;

(V): Using the Internet to fabricate and disseminate false information that influences securities and futures trade or otherwise disrupting the financial order.

(V): Building obscene websites and web pages on the internet, provide linking services to obscene websites or disseminating obscene books, photos, movies, pictures.

4: In order to protect the personal, property and other legal rights of individuals, legal persons and other groups, according to the pertinent regulations of criminal law, those that conduct on of the following acts that constitute an offence, will criminal responsibility:

(I): Using the Internet to humiliate others or trump up facts to slander others;

(II): Illegally intercepting and seizing, distorting, deleting other’s email or other data, violating citizen’s freedom to communicate and secrecy of communication;

(III): Using the Internet to perform theft, swindle, blackmail.

(V): Those using the internet to perform acts different than those listed in articles 1, 2, 3 and 4 of this decision that constitute a crime, according to the pertinent regulations of criminal law will bear the responsibility for their crimes:

6: Using the internet to perform unlawful acts, violate the management of public order, that do not yet constitute a crime, will be punished by the organs of the PSB according to the “Public order management punishment regulations”; violation of other laws, administrative regulations, that do not yet constitute a crime,  will be punished by the relevant management department according to the law, directly responsible department heads and other directly responsible persons will receive administrative sanctions or disciplinary measures according to the law.

Those using the Internet to violate the legal rights of others, that constitute a civil violation, will bear responsibility in a civil case.

7: Every level of the people’s government and relevant offices have to adopt energetic steps to value and support research and development of internet security technology, while promoting the use of the internet and the spread of network technology, in order to enhance the safe sheltering capacity of the network. The relevant controlling bodies have to strengthen propaganda and education about the safe functioning of the internet and information safety, according to the law implement effective supervision and management, be on guard and prevent the use of internet functions for every sort of illegal actions, bring about a beneficial environment for the healthy development of the internet. The work units conducting internet business have to conduct their activities according to the law, if they find out that illegal acts or harmful information appears on the internet, they have to take steps to stop the transmission of harmful information and report it to the relevant office. Any work unit and individual, when using the Internet, have to observe the law, resist every sort of illegal criminal action and harmful information. The people’s courts, people’s procuratorate, PSB, national security organs each have to perform their functions, act in close coordination, have to strike hard on every sort of illegal action that happens on the internet We must mobilize the forces of the entire society, depend on the joint effort of the entire society, to safeguard the safe functioning of the internet and information safety, promote the construction of a socialist intellectual and material civilization.


























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