The Chinese Communist Party, or CCP, is expanding its control of online data by targeting data-rich companies.
According to Reuters, the regime was looking to gain veto power over important business decisions or a board membership by purchasing the “golden shares” of the companies. The amount of stakes bought is usually 1% of the firm.
The paper noted a golden shares agreement would also make it easier for companies to obtain licenses to operate.
The CCP has used the same tactic to have ruling power over the online news and content industry over the past five years.
Sources familiar with the matter said the CCP wanted to gain control of the amble data the key information infrastructure operators are possessing.
No official confirmation has been made yet. But sources said the CCP has targeted the Chinese trucking service platform Full Truck Alliance, and China’s biggest ride-hailing company Didi.
Reuters said it could not confirm how many other companies that the CCP was seeking a gold shares deal with. But one source said the government has “broadened their attention to other companies that possess strategically important data and are considered operators of critical information infrastructure.”
One anonymous source said the CCP was eyeing companies listed in the U.S. or seeking to list in the U.S. for its gold shares offer.
Feng Chucheng, a partner of consulting firm Plenum in Beijing, said this “reminds people that data security is now being closely watched by the authorities.”