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VPN Demand Climbs in Hong Kong as China Plans New Laws

The demand for VPN, or virtual private networks, surges more than six times in Hong Kong just this week. The jump started when the news about Beijing setting a new national security law broke out.

Technology company, Atlas VPN says that the tool helps people to bypass web restrictions.

A provider in the company reported the demand followed the tough new national security law for the Asian financial hub. According to reports, consumers are very concerned about their data privacy as China has been notorious for its data privacy issues.

Aside from that, technology news sites say that the interest in the keyword “VPN” has multiplied by more than a thousand times just on May 21.

Data from Google Trends found that the interest on the keyword has hit record highs last Friday. That is just a day after China announced its new draft law.

China considers Hong Kong a Special Administrative Region. The small but powerful financial hub returned to Chinese rule back in 1997.

And ever since, anti-Beijing sentiment among Hong Kong nationals have heightened. 

Just last year, the country has suffered through intense anti-Beijing protest, which was reported all across the globe.

The country is under a “one country, two systems” type of rule. The Chinese government is looking to directly enact national security legislation on Hong Kong.

The news sent chills through the global financial market, moving shares, and raising concerns about the US-China trade war. See, the United States has strongly expressed that it will not allow China to force further control over the financial hub.

This is the main reason why VPNs are seeing a huge spike in the country.

Unrestricted Usage

Britain’s former colony is currently enjoying unrestricted access to the internet. Platforms that are known in the modern technological world, such as Facebook, Google, and Twitter, are freely used in Hong Kong.

This is the opposite in mainland China, where social networking sites and even games are restricted by the government. Facebook, Google, Twitter and other sites are blocked by Beijing.

Atlas VPN’s COO said that if the country falls into tighter online restrictions, the demand for the tool should continue to climb. Even just now, citizens have been searching more about the technology. 

International privacy groups and human rights activists are concerned that it could lead to surveillance and censorship.

On Sunday, Hong Kong police arrested more than 180 anti-Beijing protestors. Human rights advocates from all over the world have condemned the arrests.

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