The data security issues are increasing tensions between the U.S. and China, and in the midst of it, Beijing has taken the 'data security initiative' to present a global standard for data security.
In a video during a meeting in Beijing, the Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi announced a framework highlighting topics like Beijing's handling of user data. The comprehensive framework explained that Beijing would not ask Chinese companies to transfer overseas data to the government in breach of other countries’ laws. It also states that companies must refrain from installing backdoors in their products and services for illegal data collection, and that states must oppose mass surveillance against other states.
The timings of the announcement of Beijing's data security initiative links with TikTok's sale. Only last week, China updated its export law, hence making the matters for ByteDance to sell TikTok difficult. TikTok was listed as a national security threat by the U.S. government that claimed that the company was using its American citizens' data in an attempt to allow the Chinese government to spy on them.
The U.S. government has also accused the Chinese company Huawei of putting spyware in its telecommunications equipment.
According to local and foreign officials in China, company representatives were also present at the meeting where the data security initiative was discussed, and are therefore, expected to comment on it.
Zhang also hinted criticism at the Trump Administration in his speech, saying that a ''certain country'' is making ''groundless accusations'' against others in the name of a ''clean network'' and is using security as a ''pretext to prey on enterprises of other countries that have a competitive edge.''. He called the administration's behavior an act of bullying that must be ''oppressed and rejected''.