back to article Hong Kong working to share its digital IDs with mainland China

Hong Kong’s Office of the Government Chief Information Officer (OGCIO) has revealed that the territory is investigating the use of its digital ID in mainland China. In a Q&A, Secretary for Innovation and Technology, Mr Alfred Sit, said “the OGCIO is exploring with relevant authorities in the Mainland and Macao the …

  1. Claverhouse Silver badge
    Mushroom

    If You Have Done Nothing Wrong

    You have nothing to hide, Citizen.

    1. The Man Who Fell To Earth Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: If You Have Done Nothing Wrong

      Until we change the definition of "wrong" and apply it retroactively.

      FIFY

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: If You Have Done Nothing Wrong

      Not sure that's quite right. How about:

      Even when you have done nothing wrong, there is nowhere to hide, "Citizen".

    3. elsergiovolador Silver badge

      Re: If You Have Done Nothing Wrong

      Do you have nothing to hide? Or are you hiding it well enough?

      Skilled enough interrogator who can operate a cloth and a bottle of water can make you confess to anything. They just need your ID, so they can check your metadata to see if the AI deems you as a waste.

    4. Trigonoceps occipitalis

      Re: If You Have Done Nothing Wrong

      If one would give me six lines written by the hand of the most honest man, I would find something in them to have him hanged.

      Cardinal Richelieu

      Google collect data for profit, the Chinese Communist Party has another agenda.

  2. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    iAM Smart

    More like iAM Screwed.

    You will be assimilated.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: iAM Smart

      Protest, Rights, Speech Resistance is futile.

  3. Nifty Silver badge

    "adoption rates of similar tech programs by other countries – for example Belgium (2.6 per cent), Estonia (3.6 per cent)"

    HK has a way to go to catch up with Estonia then, there 16% of voters use the mobile-ID to access government services. Not sure where that 3.6% figure above came from.

    https://e-estonia.com/solutions/e-identity/mobile-id

    1. doublelayer Silver badge

      I think that's 3.6% in the first six months, later increasing to 16%. Hong Kong therefore has greater uptake at six months. I don't think they'll have any problem increasing the number--riot control equipment can do wonders when you want people to do things.

  4. martinusher Silver badge

    Bejing is just the Federal government

    China is made up of a number of provinces, each with their own provincial government and local laws. There is another layer of government which in the US, Australia, Canada, Russia and other large countries is called the Federal government. In the US the Federal government mediates disputes between states, develops and enforces standards and generally works to make sure all the states play nice. If you think of Hong Kong as just another province then it makes sense that it will work to integrate various government functions with the nation as a whole.

    We in the West seem unable to grasp the fact that Hong Kong is part of China. We seem quite OK with trying to break up other peoples' countries but are not at all happy when people try to do the same in our democracies (what happened in Spain with the Catalans being the poster child for dumb and pointless repression -- its not as if the Catalans were going to go anywhere, they're stuck in the EU). As for Hong Kong's border regime its in the same kind of situation as Northern Ireland is with the UK/EU -- culturally its in one country but physically and practically its in another. Only time will fix this.

    1. doublelayer Silver badge

      Re: Bejing is just the Federal government

      Hong Kong is not supposed to be entirely subservient to China's central government. It is not supposed to be "just another province". This is not an opinion. There is an agreement by China and the UK which specifies that it's not supposed to be. China has given it the status of "special autonomous region" in recognition of this. And to be fair to Beijing, they used to adhere at least somewhat to that agreement.

      Of course we object to China's repression of Hong Kong. I object to China's repression of anybody, but Hong Kong is a clear example of why. The people of Hong Kong were given no control over their politics, either by the UK or China, and they clearly want it. When they object to being part of a country which doesn't respect their rights, I entirely understand why and sympathize with it.

      "what happened in Spain with the Catalans being the poster child for dumb and pointless repression -- its not as if the Catalans were going to go anywhere, they're stuck in the EU"

      You will find that many do not support Spain's actions after the vote for independence. I would also add that, as undemocratic as those actions were, it involved a lot more justice than China's actions in Hong Kong let alone anywhere else they operate.

      "As for Hong Kong's border regime its in the same kind of situation as Northern Ireland is with the UK/EU -- culturally its in one country but physically and practically its in another. Only time will fix this."

      No, I can think of a few other things that could fix it. Independence could fix it. Northern Ireland had a chance to become independent and chose not to. They could have that choice again if they have changed their mind. Hong Kong was never given that right and I don't expect China to offer it now. Autonomy could also fix it. The UK doesn't force Northern Irish people to act more British, but mainland China does have policies intending on making culturally-distinct areas change to conform more, which hasn't been very popular among the general population.

    2. Allan George Dyer Silver badge

      Re: Bejing is just the Federal government

      @martinusher - I haven't seen "the West" trying to break Hong Kong away from China. There have been accusations of the protests being "foreign funded", but no evidence, and plenty of HK people freely chose to participate in peaceful protests, and vote for pro-protest candidates in the 2019 District Council elections. I think that most HK people want what was promised in the 1984 Joint Declaration and the Basic Law, including the ultimate aim of democratic elections with universal suffrage (Articles 45 and 68) and an independent judiciary (Article 85). These are clear differences from the Mainland, it's why it's called "One Country, Two Systems", and very different to the situation of any ordinary province.

      The border regime is something unique, at a practical level, in ordinary (pre-Covid) times, I, as a HK permanent resident with the right to vote, need a visa to travel to any other part of the country. Culturally, HK is distinct: for 150 years it's been more cosmopolitan and since 1949 it has continued to use the Cantonese dialect with Traditional Chinese characters, while the mainland standardised on Putonghua and Simplified Chinese characters. Even the popular culture, such as Canto-Pop (which has recently made a resurgence) is different. However, about 150 mainland people per day are permitted by the central government to become permanent HK residents, that mounts up over the years, and many residents are moving overseas. Time won't "fix" it, but complete replacement of the population might.

      1. gandalfcn Silver badge

        Re: Bejing is just the Federal government

        "I think that most HK people want what was promised in the 1984 Joint Declaration". Not sure about most. A lot definitely. Also, what did HMG do to protect HK? Not a lot really, yet it now seems very vocal. Perfidious Albion springs to mind. know many ethnic Chinese Guangdonghua speakers who just want to make enough money to live a reasonably comfortable life, and these are people who have also spent a lot of time on the Mainland and speak reasonable Putonghua as well.

        It is currently very trendy to knock Beijing yet when ones looks at India for example, crickets for doing basically the same as Beijing.

        Lust look at AGW. The ORC is a world leader in R&D and implementation of nuclear, wind and solar and is ding far, far more than most countries and yet one never hears about that in the western media, just anti-Beijing propaganda.

        Beijing is by no means perfect but It is rather sad that so called democracies are incapable of honesty.

        Back in '84I was on a ship approaching Zhanjiang (Tsamkong). We tried calling in Putonghua and English but received not a peep on response. After a couple of hours of this we tried Guangdonghua. Bingo! I subsequently ascertained that whilst Putonghua may be the language of government local dialects flourished everywhere.

        1. Allan George Dyer Silver badge

          Re: Bejing is just the Federal government

          @gandalfcn - "Not sure about most."

          I'm pretty sure that it is most, based on the approximately 60% support for pan-democrat candidates in elections for years.

          "Also, what did HMG do to protect HK? Not a lot really, yet it now seems very vocal. "

          Yes, I think HMG could have spoken up a bit sooner and stronger against some of the earlier actions that cut very close to the Joint Declaration limits. However, that doesn't change what the people of HK want.

          "many ethnic Chinese Guangdonghua speakers who just want to make enough money to live a reasonably comfortable life"

          Yes, I think that would also be a majority of people in HK, overlapping to some extent with the majority who want what was promised, they are not mutually exclusive. There are many democrat supporters who travelled (pre-Covid) to the mainland for business.

          Saying that India is bad as well doesn't make China any better.

          "Lust look at AGW. The ORC is a world leader" - What? Is this some sort of bizarre Tolkien porn? OK, "Just" and "PRC", got it. Should we keep quiet about the conditions for factory workers when we are buying our new, environmentally-friendly shiny things?

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