Tracy Qu

Tracy Qu

Tracy Qu is a Hong-Kong based technology reporter at the Post. She graduated from the University of Hong Kong with a master’s degree in journalism.

Location
Hong Kong
Language spoken
English, Mandarin
Areas of Expertise
China technology
Clubhouse China crackdown leaves users out in the cold
A new audio-only social media app that cracked China’s firewall and gave a glimpse of what a free speech China might look like, has been shut down by authorities and left millions of fans frustrated. On Monday, the invite-only, voice-chat Clubhouse app appeared to have been blocked in China, just days after Chinese language chat rooms where guests – including Chinese artist Ai Weiwei and Nathan Law, a Hong Kong activist in exile - spoke about politically-charged topics that had been banned on other platforms. When mainland Chinese users of the app tried to log on to the app, they received an error message that read: “SSL error has occurred and a secure connection to the server cannot be made
Nobody really knows who owns data in China
Data is the new oil, or at least that is what technologists will have you believe. And much like battles over natural resources, there is a virulent debate about who owns the information.  Two of China’s largest tech companies – TikTok owner ByteDance and Tencent –  are locked in a legal fight about who owns the data created by their users. On Monday, the case was accepted by a court in Beijing, a move that experts said could become a “landmark” case as authorities ramp up antitrust efforts. Bytedance is accusing Tencent of blocking links to Douyin, its Chinese-version of TikTok, on WeChat and QQ, saying they are owners of the data their users create.  Tencent has vowed to countersue, accus
Trump hands Biden a headache with ban on Chinese tech companies
US President Donald Trump issued an executive order banning transactions with eight Chinese apps, including Alipay and WeChat Pay, this week, the latest escalation of the US-China tech war.  But it will be a problem the incoming Biden administration will need to manage, analysts said, and it remains unclear if he plans to implement the order, meant to take effect in 45 days. Trump should have left the presidency by then. The latest executive order from the White House cited national security concerns, saying the Chinese programs could provide the personal data of American citizens to the Chinese government.  The ban will likely only have a limited impact on the companies because of their li
How Chinese grannies are becoming internet sensations
Dressed in a black, figure-hugging dress with silver chains and combat boots, 65-year-old Lin Wei does not fit the stereotype of a typical grandmother.  The retiree, who accessorizes her look with red lipstick and black sunglasses, is part of a fast-growing phenomenon in China, dubbed ‘glamorous grannies.’  Aged over 60, older women are turning stereotypes on their head by dressing stylishly in traditional Chinese outfits such as cheongsams – and they are gaining millions of followers on social media in the process.  “We found the coolest grandmas on TikTok,” Oprah Magazine commented under a music video posted on Instagram of Lin with a group of her elderly friends in Beijing. “Now they jus
TikTok’s challenge to Trump will not be easy
Many analysts think TikTok is unlikely to win its challenge to Donald Trump’s order banning the popular video-sharing app if it does not sell to a US company. The US president signed an executive order on August 6 banning TikTok within 45 days unless it is sold to US owners, citing national security concerns. Trump made the order under a 1977 law that lets the president block transactions and seize assets in response to an “unusual and extraordinary threat.” Trump issued another order a week later giving ByteDance, its Chinese owner, 90 days to divest its US operations, including all data gathered in the United States. The lawsuit, to be filed by TikTok on Monday, challenges the August 6 ex
The potential TikTok sale is a herculean task
ByteDance has been forced into a corner by the Trump administration, which now says it must sell the US version of its global short video hit TikTok within 90 days if the app wants to stay in business. Analysts say pulling off a sale is easier said than done due to a complex array of legal and technical obstacles. Plus, TikTok, and Bytedance, have too much at stake in the US market to simply leave.  “There is credible evidence that leads me to believe that ByteDance … might take action that threatens to impair the national security of the United States,” Trump said in the order announced on Friday. Trump originally signed an executive order on August 6 that would prohibit certain transactio
Hong Kong’s new security law puts social media giants in a tough spot
The Hong Kong authorities could block social media giants if they refused to hand over user data to the police under a new national security law, analysts said, describing a worst-case scenario that could drive global internet companies out of the Asian financial center. The world’s leading social media firms, including Google, Facebook (and its messaging app WhatsApp), Twitter, Telegram and LinkedIn, have so far presented a united front against such requests.  Their announcements to hit pause on processing requests by Hong Kong authorities for user data came a week after Beijing imposed the security law that critics feared could be used to crack down on dissent in the city. The former Briti
Hackers target Beijing and WHO amid pandemic, reports say
Hackers targeted Chinese agencies and diplomatic missions in a coordinated cyber espionage campaign, according to a report by a leading Chinese internet security provider. Both domestic Chinese agencies and Beijing’s diplomatic missions in countries including Italy, the UK, North Korea and Thailand have been attacked, according to a report by Qihoo 360. It speculated in the report that the East Asia-based DarkHotel hacking group attacked Chinese operations for reasons linked to the pandemic. The group is also suspected to be behind recent cyberattacks against the World Health Organization, according to a Reuters report. Officials and cybersecurity experts warn that hackers of all stripes are
The coronavirus has forever altered how China studies and works
With the coronavirus outbreak crippling normal life in China, technology has rushed to the fore on many fronts as a literal lifesaver. Robots in hospitals, health code apps, online education and remote working all played crucial roles in keeping the country operational with most of the population trapped in self-isolation. But as the devastating outbreak starts to ease within China, and life gradually returns to normal, many are asking whether the pandemic will leave a permanent mark on the way people work and live. The pandemic may even accelerate long-term trends such as the digitalization of education, work and even people.  Xu Yuting, an 18-year-old high school student in eastern China’s
Chinese buyers of face masks have lost $28 million in scams
Chen Xiaobai, a graphic designer from Changsha city in southern China’s Hunan province, has been running a WeChat messaging group since the beginning of February called The Victims of Online Masks Fraud. The group has attracted about 170 members, all of whom had been cheated out of money while trying to buy face masks online to protect themselves or other people from the spread of the novel coronavirus. Online fraud has a long history, but fears about the coronavirus outbreak and a shortage of masks have brought swindlers a fresh pool of potential victims among China’s 800 million internet users. With the demand for masks far exceeding the supply many have no choice but to turn to private c