WeChat Bans Crypto News Accounts as China Looks to Block Offshore Crypto Exchanges
Chinese authorities are currently poised to block access to over 120 offshore cryptocurrency exchanges. This is in an effort to clamp down on illegal crypto related activities.
According to an SCMP report citing the Shanghai Securities News, a news agency affiliated with the nation’s financial market regulators, Chinese authorities are set to block access to foreign cryptocurrency exchanges to prevent them from providing trading services to mainland citizens.
Meanwhile, relevant government agencies will continue to monitor local websites and shut down those that facilitate crypto-trades and Initial Coin Offerings. Presently, Chinese businesses are also banned from accepting payments in cryptocurrencies.
The news outlet cites individuals close to the Leading Group of Internet Financial Risks Remediation, which was set up by the cabinet in 2016. The group is tasked with curbing illicit cryptocurrency and bitcoin-related activities in the country.
That said, efforts to get a response from the Shanghai Securities News have so far been unsuccessful.
The WeChat Crackdown
On Tuesday, WeChat – the multipurpose Chinese social media, messaging, and payment app closed a couple of blockchain and crypto-news related accounts. Referred to as “China’s app for everything” by many, it currently boasts a sizeable audience of over 1 billion users, according to data from Statista, and has been a favorite among media agencies and marketers alike for its reach.
At least eight blockchain and cryptocurrency related media outlets had their accounts blocked in the WeChat crackdown for violating China’s internet regulations. The media outlets, which included news sites were suspected of having disseminated information related to ICOs and cryptocurrency trading speculation.
According to the Chinese financial news-site, Lanjiner, which was the first to break the news, media outlets that got shut out of the platform included Huobi News, CoinDaily, Jinse, Deepchain, Firecoin Information, Daily Currency Reading, Golden Finance, Wujie Block Chain, Coin World Express Service, Cannon Rating, and TokenClub.
Going by regulations published on August 7 by the Cyberspace Administration of China, messaging apps are required to warn, restrict, suspend and close accounts found to have broken relevant laws and regulations. Instant messaging services and apps are also expected to keep records of the concerned parties and infractions, as well as report them to the relevant authority.
The People’s Daily, China’s state-run media, which is also the largest newspaper in the country had earlier on in the year accused media-outlets of driving the cryptocurrency frenzy.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Elizabeth Gail is crypto-enthusiast and a blogger. Her specialties include cryptocurrency news and analysis. When not writing about crypto, she’s out taking part in humanitarian endeavors across the world. You can reach out and engage with her on Twitter and Google Plus.