Aug 4 U.S. security software maker Symantec Corp
said its products are not banned by the Chinese
government after Chinese media reported that the government's
procurement agency has excluded the company from a list of
approved anti-virus vendors.
The state-controlled People's Daily said on its English
Twitter feed on Sunday that the agency has excluded Symantec and
Russia's Kaspersky Lab from a list of security software
"It is important to note that this list is only for certain
types of procurement and Symantec products are not banned by the
Chinese government. We are investigating this report and will
continue to bid for and win government projects in China," a
Symantec representative told Reuters.
Shares of Symantec were up 1 percent at $23.42 in early
afternoon trading on the Nasdaq on Monday.
Symantec said last month it was in talks with Chinese
authorities following reports that China had banned use of one
of its products, data loss prevention software. At the time, a
Symantec spokeswoman said that there was no indication of a ban
on the company's flagship anti-virus software programs.
"We can see this becoming a more contentious issue over the
coming months," FBR Capital Markets analyst Daniel Ives told
"It's another headwind for the company as Symantec already
faces numerous challenges to show growth again. China remains a
headache situation for Symantec as well as other U.S. tech
providers across the board." Ives said.
The government procurement office also tweeted that it had
approved the use of five anti-virus software brands, all from
China: Qihoo 360 Technology Co, Venustech, CAJinchen,
Beijing Jiangmin and Rising.
The report is the latest sign that Beijing is intent on
promoting use of domestic information technology products after
revelations about the extent of U.S. spying activity by former
NSA contractor Edward Snowden, and the recent indictment of five
Chinese military officers on hacking charges have also soured
sentiment against U.S. tech corporations in the country.
Chinese technology corporations like Huawei Technologies Co
Ltd and ZTE Corp have grown into
sophisticated global conglomerates in past years, and some
analysts speculate that Beijing is promoting its local industry
standard-bearers on its own home turf at the expense of U.S.
Chinese state media have lashed out at Google Inc,
Apple Inc and other U.S. technology companies, calling
on Beijing "to punish severely the pawns" of the U.S. government
for monitoring China and stealing secrets.
Chinese media reported in May that authorities had banned
government use of Windows 8, the current version of Microsoft
Corp's operating system for personal computers.
Cisco Systems Inc and IBM are among the
Western companies that have reported flagging sales this year in
the world's largest telecoms and Internet market by users.
(Reporting by Soham Chatterjee in Bangalore and Jim Finkle in
Boston; Editing by Maju Samuel)