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China: MIIT releases notification to apps on violations of user rights

The Ministry of Industry and Information Technology of the People's Republic of China ('MIIT') released, on 15 May 2020, a notification to apps on violations of users’ rights ('the Notification'). In particular, the MIIT noted that the Notification resulted from a third-party testing agency which inspected mobile phone application software in accordance with laws and regulations such as the Cybersecurity Law, Telecommunications Regulations, and provisions on the protection of personal information of telecommunications and internet users. Furthermore, the MIIT highlighted breaches relating to, among other things, unauthorised collection of personal information, unauthorised disclosure of personal information to third parties, as well as collection beyond the outlined scope.

The MIIT emphasised that apps must complete the relevant rectification by 25 May 2020.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (2 July 2020) 

MIIT releases second batch of notifications to apps  

The MIIT released, on 2 July 2020, its second batch of notifications to apps on violations of users' rights. In particular, the MIIT noted that following the Notification, 15 apps had failed to complete the relevant rectification. In addition, the MIIT emphasised that the remaining apps must complete the relevant rectification by 14 July 2020. 

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (17 JULY 2020)

MIIT conducts investigation into two SDK's illegal use of personal information

The MIIT announced, on 17 July 2020, that it had conducted investigations into the illegal collection of personal information by two software development kits ('SDKs'). In particular, the MIIT noted that it will conduct further investigations of SDK companies, as well as commence testing of apps that have used the applicable SDK and where necessary begin the delisting of apps. Furthermore, the MIIT highlighted that app stores will be required to promptly require app developers to conduct self-examination and self-correction, as well as the timely disclosure and handling of SDKs that collect user personal information in violation of applicable regulations.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (24 July 2020)

MIIT releases third batch of notifications to apps

The MIIT released, on 24 July 2020, its third batch of notifications to apps on violations of users' rights. In particular, the MIIT noted that 58 apps had failed to complete the relevant rectification. In addition, the MIIT highlighted that the remaining apps must complete the relevant rectification by 30 July 2020.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (27 July 2020)

MIIT announces in-depth investigation into infringement of user rights and interests on apps

The MIIT announced, on 24 July 2020, that it had decided to carry out an in-depth investigation into rectification of user rights and interests on apps. In particular, the MIIT highlighted that it plans to further promote the integration of technology and management, strengthen supervision and inspection, as well as urge related companies to strengthen personal information protection on apps. In addition, the MIIT outlined that it aims to promptly rectify and eliminate outstanding issues such as the illegal collection and use of user personal information. Furthemore, the MIIT noted that its national app technology testing platform management system will be launched before the end of August 2020, and that testing covering 400,000 mainstream apps will be completed before 10 December 2020.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (20 August 2020)

MIIT issues notice on removal of apps that failed to comply with rectification notices

The MIIT issued, on 19 August 2020, a notice on the removal of apps that failed to comply with previous rectification notices. In particular, the MIIT noted that eight apps had failed to complete the required rectification, and therefore, in accordance with the Cybersecurity Law along with other regulations, the apps will be removed.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here

UPDATE (2 September 2020)

MIIT releases fourth batch of notifications to apps

The MIIT released, on 1 September 2020, its fourth batch of notifications to apps on violations of users' rights. In particular, the MIIT noted that 101 apps had failed to complete the relevant rectification. In addition, the MIIT highlighted that the remaining apps must complete the relevant rectification by 7 September 2020, or it will carry out the relevant disposal work in accordance with laws and regulations.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (16 September 2020)

MIIT issues notice on removal of apps for failure to comply with rectification notices

The MIIT issued, on 14 September 2020, a notice on the removal of apps that failed to comply with previous rectification notices. In particular, the MIIT noted that 23 apps had failed to complete the required rectification, and therefore, in accordance with the Cybersecurity Law along with other regulations, the apps will be removed.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (27 October 2020)

MIIT releases fifth batch of notifications to apps

The MIIT released, on 27 October 2020, its fifth batch of notifications to apps on violations of users' rights. In particular, the MIIT noted that 131 apps had failed to complete the relevant rectification. Moreover, the MIIT highlighted that the remaining apps must complete the relevant rectification by 2 November 2020, emphasising that it will take measures such as complete delisting, suspension of access, administrative penalties, and inclusion in the list of bad or untrustworthy telecommunications business operations in accordance with the law. Further to this, the MIIT noted that some app stores and mobile app distribution platforms were not responsible for management, however, SDK companies had illegally collected user personal information.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (11 November 2020)

MIIT issues notice on removal of apps for failure to comply with rectification notices

The MIIT issued, on 10 November 2020, a notice on the removal of apps that failed to comply with rectification notices issued on 26 October 2020. In particular, the MIIT noted that 60 apps had failed to complete the required rectification, and therefore, in accordance with the Cybersecurity Law along with other regulations, the apps will be removed. Furthermore, the MIIT noted that in the future, it will also severely dispose of some application stores and mobile application distribution platforms that have not strictly implemented the main responsibility of management, and SDK companies that have violated the regulations to collect users' personal information.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (7 December 2020)

MIIT releases sixth batch of notifications to apps

The MIIT released, on 3 December 2020, its sixth batch of notifications to apps on violations of users' rights. In particular, the MIIT noted that 60 apps had failed to complete the relevant rectification. Moreover, the MIIT highlighted that the remaining apps must complete the relevant rectification by 10 December 2020, or it will carry out the relevant disposal work in accordance with laws and regulations.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (17 December 2020)

MIIT issues notice on removal of apps for failure to comply with rectification notices

The MIIT issued, on 16 December 2020, a notice on the removal of apps that failed to comply with rectification notices issued on 3 December 2020. In particular, the MIIT noted that 26 apps had failed to complete the required rectification, and therefore, in accordance with the Cybersecurity Law along with other regulations, the relevant application stores will immediately organise the removal of the application software in the list.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (23 December 2020)

MIIT releases seventh batch of notifications to apps

The MIIT released, on 21 December 2020, its seventh batch of notifications to apps on violations for users' rights. In particular, the MIIT noted that 63 apps had failed to complete the relevant rectification. Specifically, the MIIT highlighted that the test found that several APPs privately collected MAC device address information without user consent and were sending user personal information to third-party SDKs, among other things. Consequently, the MIIT emphasised that the remaining apps must complete the relevant rectification before 28 December 2020.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.

UPDATE (21 January 2021)

MIIT issues notice on removal of apps for failure to comply with rectification notices

The MIIT issued, on 19 January 2021, a notice on the removal of apps that failed to comply with rectification notices issued on 21 December 2020. In particular, the MIIT noted that 12 apps had failed to complete the required rectification, and therefore, in accordance with the Cybersecurity Law 2016 along with other regulations, the relevant application stores will immediately organise the removal of the application software in the list.

You can read the press release, only available in Chinese, here.