China’s Cyberspace Administration (CAC) has conducted a comprehensive crackdown on social media platforms, resulting in the deletion of approximately 1.4 million posts over a two-month period.

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The investigation targeted various issues, including the spread of misinformation, illegal profiteering, and the impersonation of state officials. The campaign, part of China’s ongoing efforts to cleanse its online space and strengthen control over digital platforms, led to the closure of 67,000 social media accounts and the removal of hundreds of thousands of posts. The primary focus of the recent crackdown was on popular Chinese social media applications like WeChat, Douyin, and Weibo. The CAC mainly targeted “self-media” accounts, which are independent news and information sources that are not government-operated or state-approved. Such accounts often face scrutiny and potential censorship if they share sensitive or critical content related to the Communist Party, the government, or the military.

Among the permanently closed accounts, nearly 8,000 were found to have spread fake news, rumors, and harmful information. An additional 930,000 accounts faced milder penalties such as the removal of followers, temporary suspension, or the revocation of profit-making privileges. The CAC also took action against over 100,000 accounts that misrepresented news anchors and media agencies to counter the rising threat of AI-enabled fake news dissemination. Moreover, the crackdown targeted 13,000 counterfeit military accounts, 25,000 accounts impersonating public institutions, 187,000 accounts impersonating news media businesses, and 430,000 accounts offering professional advice without proper qualifications.

Approximately 45,000 accounts were closed for engaging in activities like sensationalizing controversial topics and illegal monetization. The CAC highlighted its collaboration with public security and market supervision departments during the campaign and encouraged internet users to report illegal activities to help maintain a clean and regulated online environment. This crackdown underscores China’s continued efforts to exert control over its cyberspace and combat misinformation and unauthorized content dissemination.

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