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China toughens cyber account naming control

The Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) on Wednesday announced rules banning improper cyber account names, such as those with obscenity, violence or crime implications.

According to the ten-point rule, which will come into effect on March 1,account names that undermine ethnic unity or break religious policies are forbidden, so are deliberately mischievous names which spread rumors, disrupt social stability, disseminate obscenity or sexually suggestive material, or otherwise breach the law.

Cyber accounts that do not comply with the new rules will be asked to change their names, and could be suspended or shut dow. The same rules apply to account images and descriptions.

According to Xu Feng, an official with the mobile Internet bureau at CAC, the new rules will also deal a blow to impostors who use account names of foreign leaders and leading newspapers.

[Source: Xinhua, Beijing, 04Feb15]

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