China has announced it will place its national security apparatus under lockdown as it grapples with a massive data hack.
The government said it will ban the “internet, social media and other digital platforms” from public life and will put a “special duty on online communication and communications networks”.
In a statement, the Ministry of Public Security said it was “deeply concerned” about the “unprecedented intrusion” and had already restricted social media, online shopping, and online shopping apps.
“The government will immediately conduct a thorough investigation into the matter and hold responsible those who have been involved in the cyber-attack”, it added.
The statement comes after the authorities ordered a “state of emergency” to be declared in several provinces across the country and the country’s capital Beijing.
“In light of the unprecedented intrusion by hackers, authorities are taking the appropriate measures,” a ministry statement said, without elaborating.
A statement from the Chinese embassy in Washington said Beijing was “extremely concerned” by the hack and had asked the US and the European Union to suspend all financial transactions with Chinese companies.
The US said it is also looking into the breach.
The cyber-security crisis in China has been fuelled by the theft of a US diplomatic cable from the US embassy in Beijing.
The Chinese government has blamed a cyber-hacking group, the “Five Eyes”, for the attack.
The US says it is working with Beijing on a response.
In response, US President Donald Trump said on Twitter that “all of our allies” were on notice.
The White House said China had been cooperating with the US in investigating the hack.
“Our government has been deeply concerned about the intrusion by cyber-criminals in the United States and the theft and unauthorized release of a U.S. diplomatic cable.
We continue to work with our Chinese counterparts to ensure we have the necessary tools to counter this threat,” a White House spokesman said.
The cable, from 2016, revealed the relationship between China and several of the countries closest allies, including the US, the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
“We are working with our allies and partners to address the hack,” the White House statement said.
China has been under pressure from international powers in recent weeks to rein in its cyber-crime, with the UN Security Council on Thursday imposing sanctions on top Chinese officials.
The sanctions were widely condemned by China, and some European countries also imposed sanctions.