University of California Forbids Students to Use WeChat and WhatsApp In China

2 years ago



CNN has just delivered a piece of sensational news as far as students and faculty at the University of California (UC) are concerned. Turns out, a warning has been issued “not to use messaging apps and social media while visiting China.” Allegedly, there’s a fear of  communications misuse by China’s law enforcement agencies. The Typical Student team learned the details.



Reasons Behind Special Guidance





The special guidance comes at heels of the arrest of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou at the request of US authorities in Vancouver December 2018. As a reaction to her arrest, China has detained two Canadians - Michael Spavor and Michael Kovrig - who are suspected in the  "activities that endangered China's national security."

The secret UC guidance comes in not without a reason as academics and some students who visited China told about "being watched and followed by police, or dragged in for questioning about their research and who they are speaking to in the country."

What Does The UC Guidance Say?




The UC guidance reads as follows: "While the use of WhatsApp, WeChat and like messaging apps are legal in China, we have seen in the latest espionage charge of a US citizen in Russia where the use of WhatsApp has been cited in his espionage charges."  


The reasoning behind the guidance is as follows: "Our concern here is the possibility China could use this condition similarly against western travelers to levy charges or as an excuse to deny departure. We recommend not using these messaging apps in China at this time."

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