Briefing: Blockchain companies in China may have to censor content, state says

China requires blockchain-based information service providers to register users using real names, censor postings and store user data–South China Morning Post

What happened: Last Friday, the Cyberspace Administration of China released the first draft of a set of regulations that could substantially restrict blockchain development within the country. Under the proposed regulations, which have been released for public consultation until November 2, blockchain-based service providers in China would require all users to register their real names and state ID numbers. Providers would also be responsible for censoring content that poses a risk to national security, and make user data available for government inspection. It is currently unclear when the regulations would be instated, if at all.

Why it’s important: Although the rules are still under development, they indicate China’s continued attempt to regulate blockchain-related enterprises within the country. Last fall, the Chinese government banned initial coin offerings and operations of the country’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges. In the months afterward, the crackdown continued. Despite setting up an official “blockchain pilot zone” in Hainan earlier this month, it appears national government intends to keep a tight rein over the development of the versatile digital technology.