Microsoft, Intel and IBM are among several U.S. tech companies protesting a new Chinese cybersecurity rule that mandates technology suppliers divulge their source code.
China says giving up source code is the only way to prove hackers cannot compromise a companies' products and confirmation that the products do not contain backdoors.
Intel said the rule "would hurt technological innovation and decrease the security level of products," according to The Wall Street Journal, which obtained copies of a discussion forum about the proposed rules.
Technical Committee 260, China’s national cybersecurity standards maker, said the new regulations would go into effect in June next year. But several U.S. tech companies have responded with protests to the draft rules, which could require them to provide the source code they use to run products as well as design data.
China is an increasingly important market for U.S tech companies — Gartner has valued the Chinese IT market at $340 billion — but the country is also becoming more challenging to do business with.
When China passed the cybersecurity law last month it generated significant concern from foreign tech businesses because it requires companies to store business info and data on Chinese citizens locally and not be transferred abroad without permission. The law also requires companies to give government investigators full access to their data if suspected of any misconduct.