China’s new anti-terror law highlights tensions between national security and digital privacy

Chinese legislators have attempted to enact anti-terror legislation purportedly designed to protect Chinese citizens against terrorist threats. In late December, China passed a law requiring both telecommunications and Internet companies operating in the country to provide decryption, technical interfaces and other assistance to public and state security organizations to conduct investigations of potential terrorist activities. The tech sector has misgivings about Chinese regulations that would force the handing over of sensitive data. Imagine a leak of encryption keys leading Chinese hackers to degrade performance of a foreign tech provider, all in the name of promoting indigenous innovation. That’s a pretty extreme scenario, but one that’s not completely unimaginable considering recent cybersecurity headlines.