Hong Kong privacy laws: privacy law could force big tech investors, companies say Business News

A tech industry group backed by giants such as Google and Apple has warned that major investors may pull out of Hong Kong due to a new privacy law.

The Asia Internet Coalition (AIC) has told the territory’s personal data protection commissioner that the changes could strain the hands of its members.

According to the Wall Street newspaper, who first reported the news, the rules could make companies liable when users maliciously post other people’s data online.

“The introduction of sanctions targeting individuals is not in line with global norms and trends,” AIC chief executive Jeff Paine said in a letter viewed by Reuters.

“Local staff of foreign platforms in Hong Kong are not responsible for platform operations; nor do they have the right of access or control to administer the content of the online platform.

“The only way to avoid these sanctions for technology companies would be to refrain from investing and offering their services in Hong Kong.”

Other members of AIC include Amazon and Facebook.

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said on Tuesday that planned data protection changes would only target illegal “doxxing” behavior, referring to the practice of sharing people’s personal information without their consent.

The practice was deployed by pro-democracy activists against police officers during huge protests in 2019.

Ms Lam said officials would meet with business leaders concerned about the program.

Hong Kong has taken a brutal authoritarian turn since China’s imposition of a sweeping national security law last year, along with changes to its political system to reduce democratic participation and oust those deemed disloyal to Beijing .

Since the introduction of the security law, the main opponents of the government have been imprisoned or fled abroad.

Additional reports by agencies

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This notice was published: 2021-07-06 11:20:53

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