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Virtual police force to get boost
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More Internet police will be deployed to fight increasing online attacks in the southern Chinese province, Guangdong police said yesterday.

"Virtual police will appear next month at major websites in Guangdong to prevent hacking, the spread of viruses and other online crimes," said Yu Canxian, director of the Internet supervision department, under the Guangdong Provincial Bureau of Public Security.

In addition to expanding Internet patrols, online police will handle reports on Internet crimes from local residents and Internet surfers, Yu said at a conference in Guangzhou.

Yu urged local residents to report online crimes and create a better surfing environment in the province, which borders the Hong Kong and Macao special administrative regions.

Internet hacking and the spread of viruses have risen in Guangdong recently, Internet supervision deputy director Ning Huijun said.

Police have also cracked down over the past few months on a growing number of online criminal cases involving porn websites, gambling and fraud, he said.

During a month-long campaign earlier this year police erased more than 8,000 links to pornographic materials, detaining 55 suspects. More than 1 million yuan ($133,000) in cash was confiscated. Around 6,200 police officers inspected up to 50,000 websites.

Yu urged people to refrain from visiting illegal websites and to report those they found.

Government departments would work closer together to ensure regular inspection of websites, he said.

White-collar worker Chen Weihong said police needed to increase their efforts to fight online crime.

"Otherwise more primary and high school students will become victims of the online scams and bad websites," she said.

(China Daily September 27, 2007)

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