China tightens military control in fresh censorship wave

Tightened Internet access is no longer limited to the Great Firewall -- instead, the military is now in the hot seat over blogging and device use.


China's military will instigate tougher political and ideological background checks on officers and soldiers as well as strictly control their Internet access as censorship reaches a new level.

On Wednesday, the People's Liberation Army Daily (PLA Daily), a state-controlled newspaper, warned that "hostile forces" must be guarded against, and there is a need to run political background checks on officers and soldiers to "prevent penetration, sabotage by hostile forces or erosion by corrupt ideas and cultures."

Guidelines issued by the Chinese Central Military Commission (CMC) also encourages more in-depth psychological examination of officers and soldiers, as well as 'improving' political and ideological education. The guidelines also suggest tighter management over mobile devices and the Internet are required -- including forbidding military personnel "from blogging, online chatting or job hunting in an official capacity."

As reported by Reuters, a commentary in the PLA Daily said:

"Some Western countries have intensified plotting against our country with 'colour revolutions,' an online 'cultural Cold War' [...] trying in vain to uproot the spirit of our military officers and soldiers."

There is unending tension between the West and China, in particular, the US and the Asian country which continually accuse each other of launching cyberattacks which affect national security. In addition, China has imposed a series of laws and regulations to try and bolster local businesses while disadvantaging international companies.

Last week, the Chinese education minister said "Western values" must be removed from the country's classrooms.

The famous "Great Firewall of China," as the country's censorship system is known colloquially, received upgrades last month which will make access to social media websites and the use of virtual private networks (VPNs) tougher.

Related: China revamps Great Firewall, cracks down on social media

Read on: In the world of security

Read on: Fixes and Flaws