US Internet giant Google is being investigated by Chinese authorities on accusations of having launched its local service without the proper license, state press reported.
Google.cn does not have the Internet content provider (ICP) license essential to operate in China, the Beijing News said.
The paper said, “Without a license, foreign capital is not allowed to engage in telecom business, including ICP operations.”
Beijing news said that the Ministry of Information was aware of the status of Google’s Chinese operations and that authorities were investigating the incident.
So far Google.cn is using the same ICP license as Ganji.com, a Chinese information website.
However the paper said foreign Internet companies had previously used the ICP licenses of local enterprises.
Silicon Valley-based Google caused chaos when it introduced Google.cn because it agreed to censor websites and content banned by China’s propaganda chiefs.
Other major US Internet and tech firms, such as Yahoo, Microsoft and Cisco, have also been condemned for complying with, or helping, China’s censorship efforts.