Video-on-demand (VOD) provider Bilibili (嗶哩嗶哩) has become the second Chinese service to draw the attention of security officials after it was found to be renting server space in Taiwan.
The Institute of National Defense and Security Research in April confirmed its findings that China’s largest VOD provider, iQiyi (愛奇藝), which operates in Taiwan, is used by China’s Taiwan Affairs Office as part of Beijing’s “united front” efforts.
Information security consultant Abbygail Wu (吳伊婷) yesterday confirmed that Bilibili rents space on servers in Taiwan owned by Chief Telecom (是方電訊), a subsidiary of Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信).
The National Communications Commission (NCC) is aware of the issue and would require Chief Telecom to cease renting server space to Bilibili, a source said.
Wu said she was motivated to investigate other Chinese VOD services after suspicions about iQiyi arose.
After tracing IP addresses to which Bilibili users in Taiwan connected, she found that they belonged to Chief Telecom, she said, adding that the company likely wanted to use local servers to provide fast connections for Taiwanese users.
Chinese VOD services abound in Taiwan, even though they are not officially allowed to operate in the nation, she said.
The operation of such services contravenes provisions in the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area (臺灣地區與大陸地區人民關係條例) and is a national security concern, she said.
The Executive Yuan said it is looking into which government agencies should be implicated in the case.
The Mainland Affairs Council said that the issue was a contravention of the act, as Article 40-1 states that Chinese companies may not engage in business activity in Taiwan without the permission of relevant authorities, and Article 34 prohibits the Chinese Communist Party from disseminating political propaganda in Taiwan.
Chief Telecom president Liu Yao-yuan (劉耀元) said that Bilibili is only one of the firm’s content distribution network clients and that the two companies have no direct relationship.
NCC acting spokesperson Hsiao Chi-hung (蕭祈宏) said that the law prohibits Taiwanese telecoms from hosting or distributing content that is deemed a national security threat or breaks any laws.
Additional reporting by Chung Li-hua and Huang Pei-chun
SOURED RELATIONS: Program director Jennifer Liu said the move to Taipei was due to a ‘perceived lack of friendliness’ from Beijing Language and Culture University Harvard University is to relocate its summer Mandarin program from Beijing to National Taiwan University (NTU) starting next year, a student publication reported on Thursday last week. Run at Beijing Language and Culture University (BLCU) since 2004, the Harvard Beijing Academy is to become the Harvard Taipei Academy once it moves to Taiwan, Crimson magazine reported. Program director Jennifer Liu (劉力嘉) attributed the decision to a “perceived lack of friendliness” from the Chinese university, potentially due to shifting political winds. Liu told the magazine that BLCU in recent years had failed to provide a single dorm for the students or separate accommodation of
The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) caucus yesterday issued a rebuttal to former US secretary of state Condoleezza Rice, who said a fistfight in the Legislative Yuan might have been “provoked from the outside” to destabilize Taiwan. Rice made the comment in an online discussion about the AUKUS alliance of Australia, the UK and the US hosted by the Policy Exchange forum in London on Thursday. On mention of Taiwan, she was quoted by The Australian as predicting that Beijing would use paramilitary forces and acts of sabotage to destabilize the nation. “There was a fistfight in the Taiwanese parliament a few weeks ago
ADVANCING TECH: With revenue on target to reach US$15.4 billion, the Hsinchu-based chipmaker said it is looking to produce 3-nanometer chips later this year Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC, 台積電) yesterday announced plans to build a new plant in Japan next year to produce 22-nanometer and 28-nanometer chips in its latest effort to expand its global manufacturing footprint. The Japanese fab is to start operations in 2024, the world’s biggest contract chipmaker said, ending months of speculation. “We have received strong commitment to supporting this project from our customers and the Japanese government,” TSMC chief executive officer C.C. Wei (魏哲家) told a quarterly investors’ conference. “We believe the expansion of our global manufacturing footprint will enable us to better serve our customers’ needs and reach global talent,
KNOWN ISSUES: Fire safety issues were found in the 40-year-old building, which previously housed a theater and restaurants, in 2019, last year and May, an official said Forty-six people died and 41 were injured in a building fire that raged out of control for hours overnight in Kaohsiung, authorities said yesterday. Flames and smoke billowed from the lower floors of the 13-story Cheng Chung Cheng (城中城) building on Fubei Road in Yancheng District (鹽埕), as firefighters tried to douse the blaze from the street and aerial platforms. The death toll rose steadily through the day as rescue workers searched the combined commercial and residential building. By late afternoon, authorities said 32 bodies had been found, while a further 14 people who showed no signs of life were among 55