Feb 01, 2021 07:40 PM

Watchdog Fines Agricultural Bank for Data Security Breaches

What’s new: Agricultural Bank of China Ltd., the world’s third-largest lender by assets, has been fined 4.2 million yuan ($650,660) as an administrative punishment for poor data security management, the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) said in a statement (link in Chinese) Friday.

The statement referred to six transgressions that breached the country’s law on banking supervision and regulation, including failure to report an important information system emergency, inadequate protection of its network and wireless internet at branches, and leaks of sensitive information through the bank’s internet portals.

The background: Regulators are stepping up oversight of data security amid growing complaints about leaks and concerns that financial institutions and other companies aren’t doing enough to protect customer data.

In May 2020, popular stand-up comedian Wang Yuechi sparked an uproar on social media after alleging that transaction records from his bank account with China Citic Bank Corp. Ltd. were included in documents sent to him by his employer, Shanghai Xiaoguo Culture Media Co. Ltd., as part of a legal dispute over the late payment of wages.

Related: In Depth: China’s Big Data Clampdown Leaves Online Lenders in a Bind

Quick Takes are condensed versions of China-related stories for fast news you can use. To read the full Caixin article in Chinese, click here.

Contact reporter Tang Ziyi ( and editor Nerys Avery (

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