The news that Apple will hand management of its Chinese users’ iCloud data over to a Guizhou-based state-owned enterprise follows a string of news stories about privacy concerns involving China’s biggest homegrown tech firms. On Tuesday, Caixin’s Han Wei reported, search giant Baidu was sued over its mobile apps’ access to user data:
Last week, Tencent’s WeChat messaging service was hit by similar accusations.
Wei Xingguo, CTO of cybersecurity company MoreSec, pointed out to Sixth Tone that “internet logs and chat logs are not the same thing.” But there is abundant evidence, going back several years, that ostensibly private WeChat messages are both monitored and filtered. A report last month by The Wall Street Journal’s Eva Dou noted several cases of users being punished for posting political content, while a Citizen Lab report last April showed automated censorship of text and images.