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Communications of the ACM

ACM TechNews

The Internet, Divided Between U.S. and China, Has Become Battleground


The world splits.

The global Internet is splitting in two.

Credit: Nicolas Ortega

The global Internet is splitting in two between China and most of the rest of the world.

In China, mobile payments have replaced cash, smartphones are extremely important, and users can shop, chat, bank, and Web-surf with one app; however, China's government monitors all online activity, and bars access to Google or Facebook.

In much of the rest of the world, the Internet is open to all, and the two zones are beginning to clash with the advent of super-fast 5G technology.

China wants to be the biggest provider of equipment underlying the networks, and it is pushing client countries to adopt its approach to the Internet.

As these universes prepare to collide, geopolitical tensions between China and the U.S. are growing.

The equipment underlying 5G technology will not disrupt the current balance of power, but many Americans warn that Beijing could use the gear to spy on the world and expand its influence.

From The Wall Street Journal
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Abstracts Copyright © 2019 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA


 

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