Apple's iCloud in China to be run by local company

Apple's iCloud in China to be run by local company

28, the USA tech giant will delegate operation of its iCloud service to Guizhou-Cloud Big Data Industry, an entity owned by Guizhou Province, the People's Daily newspaper reported.

New York-listed Alibaba Group Holding, which owns the South China Morning Post, signed a framework agreement with the Guizhou provincial government in 2014 to set up an industrial base for its cloud computing business and big data operations.

The computers on which data is being stored will be under the control of another company, though Apple would well retain control over the encryption used to store and access that data.

Chinese users of Apple's iCloud service are anxious about new terms and conditions released by the tech giant, which has partnered up with a government-owned company to operate cloud servers in the country. The Communist Party mouthpiece also said Apple was to begin sending notifications of the change to users Wednesday. In an email sent to mainland Chinese customers, Apple says that this move allows "us to continue improving the speed and reliability of iCloud and to comply with Chinese regulations".

Apple is now going to transfer Chinese iCloud data to the GCBD-managed data center in Guizhou next month. Yet Apple still announced last July that it would invest $ 1 billion in Guizhou so as to establish the new database there. Apple was the first foreign company to announce changes to its data storage in China in order to conform to the new law.

"Apple has strong data privacy and security protections in place and no backdoors will be created into any of our systems", its statement said.

While that infrastructure project was drawn up to comply with China's Cybersecurity Law, it also showed how Apple and other major hi-tech companies have shown their support for Beijing's goal to turn the poor and mostly mountainous province into a world-class hi-tech location.

Non-Chinese users whose iCloud accounts are registered in mainland China but who aren't living in the country have another option.

You don't need to take any further action and can keep using iCloud in China.

For Apple users, iCloud is typically a place to store data such as music, photos and contacts.

However, the new terms have raised privacy and surveillance concerns, with some saying that the Chinese government might now have the opportunity to monitor Apple customers.

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