Chinese lawmakers are reviewing a new privacy law this week that will ban internet companies from using big data to set discriminatory prices for users, according to state media. A revised version of the Personal Information Protection Law is expected to be passed by China’s top legislative body, the National People’s Congress Standing Committee, on Friday, state news agency Xinhua reported. The draft has several revisions, including the ban on “algorithmic discrimination” – a common practice among Chinese internet companies where a platform charges different prices to different users based on how much it thinks they are willing to pay. The revisions were needed to protect the “legitimate rights” of individuals who “feel strongly about the use of new technologies such as user profiling and recommendation algorithms, the use of big data in setting [unfair] prices for frequent customers, and information harassment in the sale of products and services”, a spokesperson for the NPC Standing Committee’s Legislative Affairs Commission told Xinhua on Tuesday. Beijing to define data that will not be allowed to leave the country easily The proposed legislation bans entities from automatically collecting personal data, and it cannot be used for “unreasonable” price discrimination, the report said. When generating push notifications and promotional content through an automated process, personal data handlers will have to provide non-personalised content or offer consumers the option to reject such content. Consumers will also be able to seek clarification as to how their personal data will be used and given the option to say no to an automated data collection process. In addition, the draft law makes a distinction between major internet platforms and smaller entities in terms of how they should handle personal data to be more transparent and fair, the report said. Further details of the proposed law are not known as the full draft has yet to be made public. The legislation – along with the new Data Security Law that will take effect on September 1 and local data regulations – is expected to put an end to a Wild West era for China’s tech companies in which they have largely had a free hand in how they collect and use consumer data. China is establishing a data governance framework that seeks to ensure the security of what it deems important data, putting limits on how businesses can collect and use sensitive personal information, while encouraging the circulation of less sensitive data to unleash its economic value.