November 16, 2016: China traced over 250 missing children during the last six months with the help of a mobile app.
The mobile app “Tuanyuan” or reunion was launched by Ministry of Public Security (MPS) in May 2015, where the police release information on missing children.
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Over the past six months, over 280 updates on missing children have been posted on the mobile app and 260 children have been found, including 152 children who ran away from their houses, 18 children who had been trafficked, 27 who were reportedly lost, and 52 who had died from drowning or other reasons, MPS said.
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The app also helps to ensure that efficient information sharing as well as collaboration between police in different regions. It encourages witnesses to report the whereabouts of the missing or trafficked children.
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A new version of the app was launched on Wednesday, which will expand its reach by cooperating with other popular apps, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.
Missing children is one of a major problems in China as the children are stolen by traffickers to sell them for adoption to childless couples are use them for begging and other crimes.
Chinese police have investigated 380 online lenders and frozen $1.5 billion in assets following an avalanche of scandals in the huge but lightly regulated industry, the government announced Monday.
Beijing allowed a private finance industry to flourish in order to supply credit to entrepreneurs and households that aren’t served by the state-run banking system. But that threatens to become a liability for the ruling Communist Party after bankruptcies and fraud cases prompted protests and complaints of official indifference to small investors.
The police ministry said it launched the investigation because person-to-person, or P2P, lending was increasingly risky and rife with complaints about fraud, mismanagement and waste.
The ministry gave no details of arrests but said more than 100 executives were being sought by investigators and some had fled abroad. It said authorities seized or froze 10 billion yuan ($1.5 billion) but gave no indication how much might be returned to depositors.
Police say some lenders and investment vehicles were brazenly fraudulent, while others collapsed after inexperienced founders failed to manage risk.
Monday’s statement said P2P lenders were investigated for complaints including wasting money, reporting phony investment plans and using illegal tactics to raise money.
Lending through online platforms grew by triple digits annually until 2017 when regulators tightened controls.
Depositors lent 1.9 trillion yuan ($280 billion) last year, but that was down by 50 percent from 2017, according to the Shenzhen Qiancheng Internet Finance Research Institute.
The outstanding loan balance stood at 1.2 trillion yuan ($177 billion) at the end of 2018, down 25 percent from a year earlier, according to Diyi Wangdai, a web site that reports on the industry.
P2P lenders are part of a privately run Chinese finance industry the national bank regulator estimated in 2015 had grown to $1.5 trillion.
The internet has helped financial platforms attract money from financial novices with little knowledge of the risks involved.
Many lend to factories and retailers or invest in restaurants, car washes and other businesses. But inexperience and poor risk control means a downturn in business conditions can bankrupt them.