China’s Ministry of Internet and Information Technology (“MIIT”) has promulgated a new regulation targeting manufacturers of mobile smart devices (such as smart phones) that prohibits them from preinstalling certain apps that raise privacy, security, or prohibited content concerns. Entitled “Notice Regarding Strengthening the Management of Network Access for Mobile Smart Terminals,” the new regulation forbids mobile smart device manufacturers from pre-installing any app that:
- collects or modifies a user’s personal information without express notification and user consent;
- accesses a network without express notification or consent, causing unauthorized bandwidth use, monetary loss, information disclosure, or other negative consequences;
- affects the smart device’s normal operations or the safe operation of the telecommunications network;
- contains content restricted by PRC law (e.g., obscene, anti-government, or hate speech); or
- infringes a user’s personal information, safety, legitimate rights or interests, or prejudices the security of network information.