An angry Chinese Internet user hacked into the local Web site of McDonald's Corp after the fastfood giant listed Taiwan as an independent country, state media said yesterday.
The attack was discovered by Internet users on Saturday as they got onto the McDonald's site only to discover it had turned black with the words "Chinese Hacker" written in large red letters, the Beijing News reported.
Under this headline, the hacker stated the action had been launched to protest that Taiwan had been listed as an independent country on the McDonald's Web site. In was unclear if this referred to the Chinese or the global site.
"Taiwan is an inalienable part of China," the hacker was quoted by the paper as stating, in rhetoric reminiscent of official Chinese declarations.
"Any attempt to separate Taiwan from China or to obstruct reunification is doomed to failure," the hacker apparently said.
McDonald's China had no immediate comment yesterday.
The company's Chinese-language Web site had been restored as of early yesterday, while its international Web site still listed Taiwan as a "Country/Market."
Foreign enterprises with business in China often run afoul of local sensitivities, especially in their promotional activities.
A TV ad for US sports manufacturer Nike featuring American basketball player LeBron James was recently banned in China.
In the 90-second promo James defeats a kung fu master, two women in traditional Chinese attire and a pair of dragons, considered a sacred symbol in Chinese culture.