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Revised Provisional Regulations Governing the Management of Chinese Computer Information Networks Connected to International Networks - 1997

(Originally promulgated on February 1, 1996 by State Council Decree No 195 and revised by the State Council on May 20, 1997)



Article 1.


These regulations are formulated to strengthen the management of computer information networks connected to international networks and safeguard the healthy development of the international computer information exchange.

Article 2.


Computer information networks within the territory of the People's Republic of China shall act in accordance with these regulations when hooking up with international networks.

Article 3.


The connotations of the terms used in these regulations are as follows:

    (1) Computer information networks hooking up with international networks (herein after referred to as international networking for short) refers to the action of computer information networks within the territory of the People's Republic of China to hook up with foreign computer information networks to realize international exchange of information.

    (2) Internet networks refers to computer information networks that conduct direct international networking; Internet units refers to units responsible for Internet operations.

    (3) Internet access networks refers to computer information networks conducting international networking through access to the Internet networks; Internet access units refers to units responsible for Internet operations.

Article 4.

The state implements a guideline of unified planning, unified standards, and separation of management at different levels to promote the development of international networking.

Article 5.


The Leading Group on Information Advancement Work under the State Council (herein after abbreviated as the Leading Group) is in charge of coordinating and resolving major issues related to international networking work.

The general office of the Leading Group shall formulate specific managing measures in accordance with these regulations; define the rights, obligations, and responsibility of units providing international access channels and the rights, obligations, and responsibility of Internet units and Internet access units; and is in charge of the inspection and supervision over international networking.

Article 6.


Computer information networks conducting direct international networking shall use the international access channels provided by the national public telecommunications networks of the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications.

No units or individuals shall set up by themselves or use other access channels for international networking.

Article 7.


Internet networks that have been already established shall be managed respectively by the Ministry of Posts and Telecommunications, the Ministry of Electronics Industry, the State Education Commission, and the Chinese Academy of Science [CAS] after they are readjusted in accordance with the relevant regulations of the State Council.

New Internet networks must have the approval of the State Council.

Article 8.


Internet access networks must conduct international networking through Internet networks.

Internet access units planning to engage in business activities related to international networking shall apply for a business licence from the department or unit authorized to process applications for permission to engage in business activities related to international networking; no one shall engage in business activities related to international networking without an international networking business licence.

Internet access units planning to engage in non-business activities related to international networking shall report to the department or unit authorized to examine and approve applications for permission to engage in non-business activities related to international networking ; no one is allowed to hook up with the Internet networks to engage in international networking without approval.

Those applying for an international networking business licence or going through the examination and approval procedures shall provide such information as the nature and scope of their computer information networks and the addresses of their host computers.

The format of the international networking licence shall be formulated centrally by the Leading Group

Article 9.


Internet access units engaging in international networking business and non-business operations shall possess the following qualifications:

    (1) Being legal persons as enterprises or institutions;

    (2) Possessing relevant computer information networks, equipment, and relevant technical and managerial personnel;

    (3) Possessing sound security and classified information protection management systems as well as technical protection measures;

    (4) Possessing other qualifications as prescribed by the law and State Council regulations.

In addition to possessing the qualifications provided for in the preceding paragraph of this article, Internet access units engaging in business activities related to international networking shall possess the ability to provide long-term service to users.

Where access units engaging in business activities related to international networking no longer meet the qualifications as provided for in Paragraphs 1 and 2 of this article because of a change in conditions, their international networking licenses shall be revoked by the issuing organ; where Internet access units engaging in non-business activities related to international networking no longer meet the qualifications as provided for in Paragraph 1 of this article because of a change in conditions, their international networking qualifications shall be cancelled by the approving organ.

Article 10.


Computers or computer information networks used by individuals, legal persons, and other organizations (hereinafter referred to as users) shall conduct international networking through Internet access networks when there is such a need.

When computers or computer information networks referred to in the preceding paragraph need to access Internet access networks, they shall obtain the approval of the Internet access unit and complete the registration procedures.

Article 11.


Units providing international access channels, Internet units, and Internet access units shall set up relevant networking management centres, strengthen the management of their units and users, and carry out security management work over network information to provide good, safe services to users.

Article 12.


Internet units and Internet access units shall be responsible for their own units' as well as users' Internet-related technical training and managerial education.

Article 13.


Units and individuals engaging in international networking shall observe relevant state laws and administrative rules and regulations, and strictly implement a security and classified information protection system; they are not allowed to use international networking to harm national security, leak state secrets, and engage in law-breaking criminal activities; and they are not allowed to produce, read, duplicate, or circulate information hampering public security and obscene pornographic information.

Article 14.


Public security organs shall order those who violate the provisions of Articles 6, 8, and 10 to stop networking, issue them a warning, and impose a fine of no more than 15,000 yuan; earnings from illegal activities shall be confiscated where applicable.

Article 15.


Those who violate these regulations while at the same time breaking other relevant laws and administrative rules and regulations shall be punished in accordance with the relevant laws and administrative rules and regulations; those whose actions constitute a crime shall be investigated to ascertain their criminal responsibility.

Article 16.


Networking with computer information networks in Taiwan, Hong Kong, and Macao shall be conducted with reference to these regulations.

Article 17.


These regulations shall take effect on the day of promulgation.

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