New Hub for Data Security Launched

Guo Min

China’s new center for information security technology opened in Pudong, Shanghai, yesterday, a key step in the country’s effort to protect its business and government secrets and further develop electronic commerce.

Some 200 million yuan (US$24 million) will be invested in the new facility, which pulls together China’s existing security technology organizations and seeks to bring even more resources into play as domestic industry tries to catch up with international standards.

The center, called the National Base Industrialization of Information Security Accomplishments, was opened in the Shanghai Pudong Software Park by Xu Guanhua, deputy minister of Science and Technology, and Zhou Yupeng, a Shanghai vice mayor. Nineteen companies and research institutes began operations there yesterday, along with the Information Security Engineering College of the Shanghai Jiaotong University.

International power politics and intense global business competition require a country to develop its own means of protecting information, Xu noted, pointing out that China’s efforts are still at a “primitive stage.”

“We must develop our security technology and industrialize it,” said the deputy minister. “It is the foundation on which our high technology will grow, and we can’t afford to waste a single moment.”

Protecting information from hackers and competitors is vital for almost every business and government organization.

The core of information security technology is encryption, or translating information into code. Other technologies include “firewalls” to prevent hacker attacks, anti-virus software, and monitoring systems to track network users.

These techniques will be further developed as Shanghai government and central government departments team up.

The facility will be run by a new company that expects to receive start-up funding of about 200 million yuan. The government will invest 10 percent, business enterprises will kick in 30 percent, and the rest will come from local venture capital companies.

(Shanghai Daily 10/06/2000)

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