Google To Remove China Censorship; May Opt Out of China

by on January 13th, 2010 1

Google is preparing to remove censorship in China, and this might mean pulling out of the Asian Giant completely. The search giant is taking this step in the favor of free speech and in response to recent attack on the company services like Gmail from the Dragon Country, says the statement in the Google’s official blog.

Google says:Google china

Like many other well-known organizations, we face cyber attacks of varying degrees on a regular basis. In mid-December, we detected a highly sophisticated and targeted attack on our corporate infrastructure originating from China that resulted in the theft of intellectual property from Google. However, it soon became clear that what at first appeared to be solely a security incident–albeit a significant one–was something quite different.

First, this attack was not just on Google. As part of our investigation we have discovered that at least twenty other large companies from a wide range of businesses–including the Internet, finance, technology, media and chemical sectors–have been similarly targeted. We are currently in the process of notifying those companies, and we are also working with the relevant U.S. authorities.

Second, we have evidence to suggest that a primary goal of the attackers was accessing the Gmail accounts of Chinese human rights activists. Based on our investigation to date we believe their attack did not achieve that objective. Only two Gmail accounts appear to have been accessed, and that activity was limited to account information (such as the date the account was created) and subject line, rather than the content of emails themselves.

How much will it harm Google?

Google knows that this will mean a huge loss for the company, which may result in great change in the Technical as well as geo-political space. Pulling out of China means losing a significant share of World population, and this can not be easy for any global player.

Losing China will also mean losing more than half of Asia for Google as they are not strong in China too. Yahoo is ahead of Google in Japan, and there are companies like Mixi and Gree ruling the Social Media in the far east nation. Google pulling out of China may altogether end Google efforts to dominate Web, and this might help Baidu become a serious competitor to Google in future.

China has the largest online population in the World now, and by 2050 the number might be more than US and Europe combined.

Who will benefit?

Yahoo seems of be the biggest benefactor of this step, if it happens. Yahoo is already strong in Japan, and Yahoo Japan might take some serious step in building Chinese operations for the parent company. This is highly possible.

The other is the Chinese Search Engine giant Baidu.com. Baidu has already become second largest search engine surpassing Yahoo, and Google pullout can only help it grow. Baidu is believed to be cash rich and is looking for expansion Worldwide, I will not be surprised if it acquires Mixi or Gree of Japan, and builds a social network parallel to Google’s Orkut and Facebook.

I won’t be surprised if Baidu comes out to the World stage like Lenovo in hardware. And the only way to stop Baidu do it, is by creating competition within China.

GT Thoughts: Pulling out isn’t the Best option

Companies need to work to make World better but they need to abide by the law of nations, and its best if they work accordingly. It is always good to convince people of benefits of having free speech, than by taking any country head-on.

The attacks happen from any country, and this time it might be from China. There are rogue elements and there are good people too. We all have beliefs and we think that our belief is the best. But to be forceful against other’s belief is bad.

If Chinese government is behind attacks on Google, Google needs to upgrade security and talk to the Chinese officials. Take things to the international area and work on a level which helps fight the threat by remaining within Chinese, US and International Law.

If China opts out of China, Chinese people will be the biggest losers. They will not only lose the great Gmail products, they will probably lose out many other Tech companies entry inside the Great Wall.

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