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Chinese Government Blocks Microsoft’s Search Engine ‘Bing’

Google has also shelved its plan to re-enter China through a censored search application code-named "Project Dragonfly" after massive protests

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Microsoft's building.
The office building of Microsoft. Pixabay

The Chinese government has reportedly blocked Microsoft’s search engine Bing – the only global search platform that was open for use in the country, the company announced on Thursday.

According to a report in Financial Times, mainland Chinese users wrote on social media that attempts to access Bing’s China site, cn.bing.com, failed.

“Two sources familiar with the government order confirmed that Bing had been blocked. One of the sources explained that China Unicom, one of China’s major state-owned telecoms companies, had confirmed the government had ordered a block on Bing,” said the report.

In a statement given to The New York Times, Microsoft said: “We’ve confirmed that Bing is currently inaccessible in China and are engaged to determine next steps”.

Google, Australia, encryption, Sundar pichai
Google has also shelved its plan to re-enter China through a censored search application code-named “Project Dragonfly” after massive protests. VOA

According to Greatfire.org, a group that tracks what sites are blocked in China, said the site appeared to be inaccessible in parts of the country but reachable in others, reports The New York Times.

China’s blockages often take time to spread nationwide, though in the past some services have been blocked in some places only to be restored later.
It was not immediately clear why Bing has been being blocked.

China’s internet regulator is yet to comment on the development.

Microsoft, which recently overtook Apple as the world’s most valuable company, is the latest US tech giant to face difficulties in China.

Google Search is already inaccessible in China while Facebook-owned WhatsApp was blocked in 2017.

Microsoft, Taiwan AI
A man walks past a Microsoft sign set up for the Microsoft BUILD conference at Moscone Center in San Francisco, April 28, 2015. Microsoft says it’s requiring its U.S. suppliers to offer their employees at least 12 weeks paid leave to care for a new child. The company announced the new parental leave policy Thursday. VOA

Google had earlier launched a search engine in China in 2006 but pulled the plug in 2010, citing Chinese government efforts to limit free speech and block websites.

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Google has also shelved its plan to re-enter China through a censored search application code-named “Project Dragonfly” after massive protests. (IANS)

Next Story

New Virus Can Spread Through Human Contact: China

China: Possible That New Virus Could Spread Between Humans

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Security guards stand in front of the closed Huanan wholesale seafood market, where health authorities say a man who died from a respiratory illness had purchased goods from, in the city of Wuhan, Hubei province, China. VOA

The possibility that a new virus in central China could spread between humans cannot be ruled out, though the risk of transmission at the moment appears to be low, Chinese officials said Wednesday.

Forty-one people in the city of Wuhan have received a preliminary diagnosis of a novel coronavirus, a family of viruses that can cause both the common cold and more serious diseases. A 61-year-old man with severe underlying conditions died from the coronavirus on Saturday.

While preliminary investigations indicate that most of the patients had worked at or visited a particular seafood wholesale market, one woman may have contracted the virus from her husband, the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission said in a public notice.

CHINA-HEALTH-VIRUS
Commuters wear protection masks inside a subway train in Hong Kong, China. VOA

The commission said the husband, who fell ill first, worked at the Huanan Seafood Wholesale Market. Meanwhile, the wife said she hasn’t had any exposure to the market.

It’s possible that the husband brought home food from the market that then infected his wife, Hong Kong health official Chuang Shuk-kwan said at a news briefing. But because the wife did not exhibit symptoms until days after her husband, it’s also possible that he infected her.

Chuang and other Hong Kong health officials spoke to reporters Wednesday following a trip to Wuhan, where mainland Chinese authorities briefed them on the outbreak.

The threat of human-to-human transmission remains low, Chuang said, as hundreds of people, including medical professionals, have been in close contact with infected individuals and have not been infected themselves.

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She echoed Wuhan authorities’ assertion that there remains no definitive evidence of human-to-human transmission.

The outbreak in Wuhan has raised the specter of SARS, or severe acute respiratory syndrome. SARS is a type of coronavirus that first struck southern China in late 2002. It then spread to more than two dozen countries, killing nearly 800 people. (VOA)