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Police target crimes on information networks

Updated: Sep 9, 2022 China Daily Print
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Public security authorities nationwide have undertaken multiple operations targeting illegal activities on networks or infringing the public's rights, according to the Ministry of Public Security.

About 9,100 such cases were investigated from the end of June to the end of August.

The operations focused on prominent online crimes including paid posters, personal information infringement, hacking, eavesdropping and sneak photography, aiming to safeguard security in cyberspace.

Police detained about 13,000 suspects and imposed administrative punishments on 523 internet enterprises violating laws and regulations during the period.

In dealing with one of the prominent online problems in recent years, the ministry has taken precise measures to target activities such as manipulating multiple accounts to spread rumors to attract public attention; to incite public opinion for blackmail; to post uniform comments in large amounts to "block" unwanted ones; and to delete comments for a fee, said Wang Yingwei, head of the ministry's network security bureau.

During the two months, police nationwide resolved 147 cases of paid posters, closed 210,000 accounts and 185 websites and removed 127,000 pieces of harmful online information, effectively cleaning up cyberspace, according to the ministry.

"To attract attention and earn platform rewards, some people used the network hot spots or released false information or even malicious rumors. Some suspects set up fake media websites and social media accounts to write and hype negative information for blackmailing targeted parties," said Sun Jinfeng, political commissar of the network security bureau.

In one case released by the ministry, a group led by a suspect surnamed Liao in Guangdong province focused on looking for people having disputes with decoration companies and used the guise of helping others safeguard their rights to release negative posts about 50 involved decoration companies across the country on different social media platforms.

The group also used excuses like paying labor costs and deletion fees to blackmail the companies and asked for large amounts of money or property.

On Aug 4, the police detained 14 suspects in Xiaogan of Hubei province and Jieyang and Huizhou of Guangdong. Police found that the group was paid to post and delete comments, and manipulated about 1,200 mobile phones to conduct the operation. They cumulatively posted 80 million comments on different platforms, involving 26 million yuan ($3.7 million).

Police nationwide have resolved 339 such cases this year, said Sun.

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