Uncovering the Chinese Government’s Use of Technology to Spy on its Citizens

By- Michael Megarit

The Chinese government has a long history of monitoring and surveilling its citizens in order to maintain social control and suppress dissent. This surveillance is carried out through a variety of means, including the use of advanced technology, a vast network of informants, and strict censorship laws.

One of the primary ways in which the Chinese government carries out surveillance is through the use of advanced technology. This includes the use of facial recognition software, which is used to track individuals in real time, as well as the use of internet monitoring tools that allow the government to monitor and control online activity.

One example of this is the “Golden Shield Project,” also known as the “Great Firewall of China,” which is a system of censorship and surveillance that is used to control and monitor internet activity within the country. This system includes a network of filters and blocks that are used to block certain websites and social media platforms, as well as tools that are used to monitor and collect data on individuals who access the internet.

Another key aspect of Chinese government surveillance is the use of a vast network of informants. This includes both government officials and private citizens who are paid or coerced into reporting on the activities of their fellow citizens. This allows the government to gather information on individuals and groups that may be considered a threat to the regime.

In addition to these methods, the Chinese government also makes use of strict censorship laws that are designed to suppress dissent and control the flow of information. This includes laws that prohibit the spread of “illegal” information, as well as laws that criminalize activities such as “inciting subversion” or “disrupting social order.”

One example of this is the Cyber Security Law, which was passed in 2016, which gives the government broad powers to monitor and control online activity. The law requires internet companies to provide user data to the government upon request, and it also makes it illegal to spread “false” information online.

The Chinese government has also implemented a social credit system, which assigns each citizen a score based on their behavior and activities. This score can be used to determine whether an individual is allowed to travel, access certain services, or even find employment.

While the Chinese government’s surveillance efforts are primarily focused on maintaining social control and suppressing dissent, they also have implications for privacy and civil liberties. The use of advanced technology, such as facial recognition software, raises concerns about the potential for abuse and the erosion of privacy rights. Similarly, the use of a vast network of informants and strict censorship laws can stifle free speech and suppress dissenting voices.

In conclusion, the Chinese government has a long history of monitoring and surveilling its citizens in order to maintain social control and suppress dissent. This surveillance is carried out through a variety of means, including the use of advanced technology, a vast network of informants, and strict censorship laws. As technology continues to advance, the Chinese government is likely to continue to develop new and more sophisticated methods of surveillance, which could have significant implications for privacy and civil liberties.

By:

Michael Megarit

References:

  1. “China’s Golden Shield: The Development of China’s National Internet and Information Security Policy.” Congressional-Executive Commission on China, October 2016.
  2. “China’s Social Credit System: An Overview.” Congressional-Executive Commission on China, March 2018.
  3. “China’s Cyber Security Law: An Overview.” Congressional-Executive Commission on China, December 2016.
  4. “China’s Great Firewall: What it is and how it works.” BBC, December 2019.
  5. “China’s mass surveillance is chilling. But it’s also a model for the future.” The Guardian, May 2018
  6. “The Real-Time Monitoring of China’s Citizens.” The New York Times, August 2019

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