Amazon's Chinese cloud service bows to state censorship

Amazon is the latest multinational firm to bow to state censorship to continue selling its products in China.

The electronic commerce company, founded by Jeff Bezos in 1994, offers cloud based services within the secretive state's economy.

A controversial cybersecurity crackdown came into effect last month that tightened restrictions on freedom of speech online, imposing new rules on service providers.

Apple also sparked criticism in recent days after removing software from its app store that allowed internet users to skirt the country's controls.

Amazon is the latest multinational firm to bow to state censorship to continue selling its products in China. The electronic commerce company, founded by Jeff Bezos in 1994, offers cloud based services within the secretive state's economy (stock image)

Amazon is the latest multinational firm to bow to state censorship to continue selling its products in China. The electronic commerce company, founded by Jeff Bezos in 1994, offers cloud based services within the secretive state's economy (stock image)

CLOUD COMPUTING IN COMMUNIST CHINA 

China requires foreign companies to partner with local businesses and forbids them from owning a controlling stake in the firm, according to reports in the New York Times.

In a further tightening in restrictions, China has proposed banning multinationals from using their own brand name to promote their services. 

The new laws would also oblige them to cut off access and report any behaviour by customers that contravenes the country's laws.

Although Amazon is a small player in the cloud computing market in China, it has been keen to grow its services.

It has also been working on a Chinese language version of the Kindle, in conjunction with state-run telecom China Mobile.

Amazon web services operates in partnership with Beijing Sinnet Technology to provide cloud computing in the country.

This includes website hosting, Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) and other services which can be used to circumvent the Great Firewall of China, the nickname given to the series of draconian censorship measures in force online in the communist state.

But Sinnet has warned its customers via a series of emails that anyone using the platform to do should cease immediately. 

Clients who queried the communications were met with a recorded message, according to reports in the New York Times.

In it, a company spokesman called Ms Wang said: 'If users don't comply with the guidance, the offered services and their websites can be shut down.

'We the operators also check routinely if any of our users use these softwares or store illegal content.' 

MailOnline has contacted Amazon for a comment but had not received a reply at the time of publication. 

Chinese internet users have for years sought to get around heavy internet restrictions by using foreign VPN services.

Apple has also parked criticism after removing software from from its app store that allows internet users to skirt China's' Great Firewall. China has hundreds of millions of smartphone users and is a vital market for Apple (stock image)

Apple has also parked criticism after removing software from from its app store that allows internet users to skirt China's' Great Firewall. China has hundreds of millions of smartphone users and is a vital market for Apple (stock image)

Get the latest news delivered to your inbox

Follow us on social media networks

NEXT Technology Cramer unpacks Analog Devices' 'mosaic' of unstoppable growth drivers