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Critics: Cell Phone Registration Invades Privacy

PRIVACY LAW—CHINA

September 2, 2010

A new rule requiring cell phone users to register their phone numbers by showing personal information is raising privacy concerns from critics. The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology says residents buying numbers for mobile phones must show ID cards, and foreigners must also produce their ID cards, Reuters reports. But the rule, which came into force yesterday, is seen by critics as an invasion into users' privacy and a way for the government to pry. Some fear the numbers could be sold to third parties for nefarious purposes. A commentary in the China Economic Times calls for measures to protect citizens' privacy under the new rule.
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