China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology published new security and advertising provisions for regulating the Internet information service market, effective March 15, 2012.

The provisions prohibit activities that violate the rights and interests of other Internet information service providers, including disturbing the services of other providers in a malicious way, or spreading malicious rumors about other service providers. The services mentioned cover the download, installation, running, and updating of software.

According to the provisions, Internet information service providers need to gain the consent of users and provide clear and complete software function information before downloading, installing, running, updating or uninstalling software on the terminal devices of users. Any misleading or compulsive installation or running of software is prohibited.

In regards to advertising pop-up windows, the provisions state Internet information service providers should provide obvious functional marks to shut or exit these windows within Web browsers.

The new provisions enhance protection of personal information of Chinese Internet users. By formulating regulations on collecting and use of user personal information, the provisions ask Internet information service providers to keep user personal information secure and they must not provide the information to third parties without the consent of users. If the user information is leaked or may have leaked, information service provides should implement remedial measures immediately. If the leakage has the possibility to cause serious results, the service provides should report the activities to government administrative units for further investigation.