China internet police to "come to the frontstage": Ministry
Chinese police will on Monday unveil its internet inspection arm which has long operated in the backstage, in a bid to further combat cyber crimes, the Ministry of Public Security said Sunday.
Starting from June 1, internet police in 50 localities - including both metropolises such as Beijing and Shanghai as well as small, impoverished city such as Bijie in southwest China's Guizhou Province - will officially launch their own accounts on popular social networking services including Weibo and Wechat.
"Internet police are coming out to the front stage from behind the curtains", a statement from the ministry said.
Working 24/7, the cyber police teams are tasked to sniff out "illegal and harmful information on the internet, deter and prevent cyber crimes and improper words and deeds online, publish case reports and handle public tip-offs."
They will give warning to those involved in minor offences and help investigate law violations in more serious cases, the ministry said.
"Just like in the real world, law violations in the cyberspace will not go unaccounted for," the statement read, adding that traditional crimes are increasingly infiltrating the internet, posing severe challenges to cyberspace governance.
It said authorities have already deleted some 758,000 pieces of "illegal and criminous information", and have investigated and handled over 70,000 cyber crime cases since the start of this year.